Early March thunderstorms brought strong winds, heavy rain and hail to the KMCH listening area on Saturday night.
The Vinton area took the hardest hit here in eastern Iowa, with structure damage and gas leaks reported on the northwest side of Vinton. Emergency management says it may have been a tornado – the National Weather Service has not yet confirmed that. Winds were estimated at 60 to 70 miles per hour in the Vinton area.
As the storms moved east, tornado warnings were issued due to rotation indicated on radar, but there were no reports of funnel clouds or tornadoes locally. Winds were estimated at 55 miles per hour as the storms moved through Manchester. The fire department in New Vienna estimated wind gusts there at 65 miles per hour.
The storm damaged a calf building on a farm south of Petersburg, tearing off half of its roof.
The storms also brought hail to some locations – Monticello reporting one-inch quarter-sized hail, with small hail also reported in the Palo and Cascade areas.
An observer east-northeast of Hazleton reported nearly an inch and a half of rainfall on Saturday.
photo courtesy of Randy Geistkemper; imagery courtesy of National Weather Service