At least four tornados touched down in north-central Illinois Wednesday, as a series of powerful storms swept through the area. Widespread damage is reported, knocking out power to thousands of homes and businesses.
The worst damage appears to be in Pontiac. ComEd crews are at work restoring power. A canopy covering gas pumps was blown over. Two semi-trailer trucks were also toppled. A gas station on the south side of Illinois 116 reported damage. A Wal-Mart Super Center along 166 may have also been damaged.
Pontiac Police confirm a tornado just outside the city around 10 pm.
There were reports of people trapped in a mobile home park.
Chatsworth and Piper City and the Onarga areas were under tornado warnings overnight.
Parts of Livingston, Iroquois, Ford counties were all under tornado warnings.
LaSalle, Kankakee and Grundy counties were also hit hard by tornado activity. The NWS survey teams will be investigating today.
Today (Wednesday) marks the one-year anniversary of the Coal City tornado ripped apart the Grundy County community. An EF-3 tornado disrupted the small community's way of life. And today, the town is still rebuilding.
It was June 22 when the storm hit. And today, June 22, the forecast is calling for a threat of bad weather again.
Many community residents have rebuilt. But the threat of weather is always in the minds of those who suffered through the damage that day.
Rebuilding efforts continue. And many residents remain leery about weather alerts. Others, though not forgetting what happened, have moved on and continue to rebuild their lives.
A plaque will be dedicated at a Coal City council meeting Wednesday night. It will be placed on the stump of one of the 50,000 trees toppled by the storm.
Kacie Haag of Emington has been named one of four Illinois Star Award winners through the Illinois FFA. Her honor came at the 88th annual Illinois State FFA Convention, held June 14-16 at Springfield.
Kacie won the Illinois Star Award in ag science for monitoring nitrogen fertilizer use on the family farm to ensure minimal environmental impact.
She is the daughter of Michael and Trisha Haag, of Emington. She's a student of FFA adviser Diana Loschen, vocational agriculture teacher and FFA adviser at Tri-Point High School in Cullom.
Kacie's supervised agricultural experience includes work on her family's large hog farm. She has worked with cover crop trials and a new program called N-Watch to study one spot of the field once each month to better understand the movement of nitrogen through the soil profile. Her project helps ensure the farm is minimizing its environmental impact.
Illinois Star awards also awarded for ag business, ag placement and star farmer.
Kacie also won the state proficiency award in environmental science and natural resources for the nitrogen project.
Illinois Star Awards honor FFA members who have developed the organization's most outstanding agricultural skills and competencies through their Supervised Agricultural Experience. They also have demonstrated outstanding management skills and earned the State FFA Degree — the Illinois Association FFA's highest degree of membership.
A Danforth man operating a tractor-mower for the Illinois Department of Transportation escaped serious injury Tuesday when his equipment was hit from behind. It happened at 8:30 am on Route 45/52 at 3250 N Road in Iroquois County.
35-year-old Benjamin Redenius was treated for minor injuries at Riverside Hospital in Kankakee.
Illinois State Police reported Redenius was northbound when a truck driven by Edgar Padilla of Park City came up from behind, hitting the tractor-mower and leaving a pile of ruins on the highway. Route 45/52 was closed for two hours while the wreckage was cleaned up.
Padilla was cited for Failure to Reduce Speed to avoid the crash.