SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) –“There’s a funnel right there.” Today marks 25 years since a powerful spring storm brought 14 tornadoes to south central Minnesota.
The two biggest tornadoes were an F3 in St. Peter and an F4 in Comfrey, where the tornado destroyed 75 percent of the homes.
This storm was driven by a low pressure system with the low centered over Wyoming. As it moved over Iowa and Nebraska it was pulling warm, humid air out of the gulf. The air mass had high temperatures over 70 degrees and dew points in the mid 60s. The upper level winds were strong from the south and southwest. Surface winds were from the southeast, that created wind shear. Wind shear is what causes spin in a thunderstorm. The first thunderstorms reported with this system happened outside of Brandon with three-quarter inch hail.
The Comfrey tornado touched down at 3:50 that afternoon. This tornado’s path was 67 miles long and it was more than a mile wide. It caused $75 million in damage, but people in the town of 400 vowed to rebuild.
“We have a lot of pride in this town, we’ll see if we can.”
This whole system caused over $300 million in damage.