FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – An outbreak of severe thunderstorms occurred Friday evening into early Saturday morning across northeast Indiana and northwest Ohio. The area experienced large hail, strong winds, and now at least five tornadoes.
We experienced two distinct rounds of storms. The first round during the early evening hours brought large hail to our northern communities. The largest hailstone recorded was 1.75 inches in diameter – that was found at Clear Lake in Steuben County and is roughly the size of a golf ball. Other parts of the area recorded one inch diameter hail, which is roughly the size of a quarter. Small hail was also reported in the Fremont area and in the Wallen area of Fort Wayne. We did receive a photo of hail covering the street and ground north of Fremont.
By late in the evening, a second, much stronger round of storms moved into the area. This round brought high winds and tornadoes to the area. We also experienced plenty of rain in a short amount of time.
Seven tornadoes have now been confirmed from this round, including two on the northeastern side of Allen County. The stronger one was rated an EF-2, with winds up to 120 mph. It was on the ground for nearly eight miles and had a maximum path width of 400 yards. The other tornado was a weak EF-0 with 75 mph winds. Both tornadoes resulted in a clear path of damage. A third weak tornado has been confirmed in the Antwerp, Ohio, area of Paulding County. This tornado was an EF-0 with 80 mph wind gusts. It was on the ground for about 0.8 miles and had a maximum path width of 150 yards. As of Monday, two more stronger tornadoes were confirmed in Grant County. One was an EF-2 near Swayzee with 120 mph winds and a 3.1 mile path length. The other was an EF-3 near Gas City with 140 mph winds and a 6.4 mile path length. On Tuesday, the National Weather Service added two additional tornadoes to the list, both occurring in Jay County. Both were rated EF-0. One was near Salamonia, the other near Portland. The Salamonia tornado was on the ground for 1.54 miles and the Portland tornado for 2.44 miles. You can learn more about the tornadoes that occurred by visiting this link. We are thinking of those impacted by all of these tornadoes.
High wind gusts were recorded outside of the tornadoes. Here is a recap of the top thunderstorm-related wind gusts. Note that these are official measurements and this report does not include a microburst that was identified later in the day on Saturday by the National Weather Service. A microburst is a localized rush of air out of a thunderstorm. It is estimated winds briefly gusted up to 70 mph in western Defiance County near the Hicksville, Ohio, area as storms moved through. This resulted in some building and tree damage.
Finally, here’s a recap of the top rainfall totals. Some flooding of the roadways was seen after the storms had exited the area early Saturday morning.
For the latest forecast information and to view if there are any future opportunities for severe weather, visit our WANE 15 Forecast Page.