Thunderstorms began to roll across the area around 11pm last night with winds gusting as high as 50 mph in some locations. Ice from an earlier wave began to take its toll on power lines and tree limbs. Lake Mills was covered in ice while further south in Kanawha, the ground was wet from rainfall during the day and overnight hours.
This morning, power lines began to fall. Along Highway 69 both north and south of the Highway 9 interchange to Thompson and Buffalo Center, power poles snapped or toppled over toward the highway. Some of the lines were perilously close the to the road and covered the shoulder. The Winnebago County Sheriffs Office reported that one man was trapped in his car under the wires and had to be rescued.
Further north in Emmons, Minnesota, power went out between 9:30pm and 11:30pm from the force of the storm. Then it went out again at 7am. Power lines along a gravel road leading to the city had toppled over, cutting off electricity to the town.
Cities such as Britt and Forest City lost power causing problems for not just those who were leaving for work or were on the job, but also for law enforcement according to Winnebago and Hancock County Emergency Management Coordinator Andy Buffington.
Roads and power lines along roads became an issue.
In Hancock County, Hill Avenue between 310th to 320th Street James Drive, 330th street to Crystal Lake campground, and Oak Avenue between 260th and 270th Streets. All of these roads are closed due to down power lines and poles.
A number of towns are reporting power outages in Worth County. Power lines are reported down in the 410th and Fir Avenue areas. On I-35, a semi blew over causing a back up on the interstate.
In Winnebago County, Secondary Roads Engineer Scott Meinders says that several roads are closed until further notice.
In Lake Mills, the canopy that covers the gas pumps at Casey’s toppled over from the force of the wind.
The store is now closed until repairs can be made to the canopy. This is the second time in six years that the canopy has sustained this kind of damage.