NWS says South Dakota had at least 5 tornadoes on Thursday


At least five tornadoes were reported in South Dakota on Thursday, according to the National Weather Service.

Two of South Dakota’s tornadoes received preliminary EF2 ratings, meaning they were strong tornadoes between 111 and 135 mph, according to the NWS. The rest were classified as weak tornadoes.

Here’s what we know about tornadoes so far, based on preliminary NWS storm data and reports.

Castlewood, County Hamlin

  • Tornado Rating: EF-2
  • Injuries: One, no deaths
  • What happened: At 5:45 p.m., multiple witnesses reported seeing a small tornado descend on the southern edge of Castlewood. He traveled 1 mile north and took four minutes. Most of the damage was concentrated between Third Avenue and Fourth Avenue. A funeral home on Market Street was destroyed. Several garages were destroyed. Castlewood Elementary School suffered damage, including to the roof of its gymnasium. A bus shed was destroyed. Several houses had damage to their roofs.

After:Sioux Falls NWS calls Thursday’s high winds a ‘derecho,’ with tornado-like damage

Gary, County Deuel

  • Tornado Rating: EF-2
  • Injuries: One, no deaths
  • What happened: It started and ended 1 mile south of Gary and lasted two minutes, from 5:58 p.m. to 6 p.m. The tornado started near 180th Street and traveled 0.3 miles, ending in a grove of trees. Rotation was noted in a corn stubble field. A farm suffered significant damage, outbuildings were destroyed and a house on the property lost its roof. A semi-truck was turned 180 degrees and overturned during the tornado. Residents noted that their dog had been picked up by the wind, but the dog was found by neighbors a mile away with only minor injuries.

After:At least 11,000 people still without power two days after storms in eastern South Dakota

Rauville, Codington County

  • Tornado Rating: EF-1
  • Iinjuries: None, no deaths
  • What happened: A tornado formed 4 miles north of Kampeska Lake around 6 p.m. A house had its roof partially removed, its garage destroyed and its outbuildings destroyed.

Tunerville, County Deuel

  • Tornado Rating: EF-1
  • Injuries: None, no deaths
  • What happened: A tornado touched down on the northeast side of Lake Alice around 6:05 p.m. A hunting lodge lost half of its roof protection causing rain damage to the interior of the lodge. A family was staying in a nearby RV and was evacuated. A few minutes after their evacuation, the motorhome was picked up and placed on its roof. The family was not injured.

Webster, Day County

  • Tornado Rating: EF-1
  • Injuries: None, no deaths
  • What happened: A tornado formed 6 miles south of Webster around 6:15 p.m. An outbuilding was badly damaged with its roof torn off and an interior wall toppled. A calving shed was knocked over, an animal trailer tipped over and a metal windmill was knocked over and twisted.

After:Cleanup efforts are underway in Castlewood and beyond after the EF2 tornado and severe storms

Follow Annie Todd on Twitter @AnnieTodd96. Reach her with tips, questions, and other community news at [email protected] or call her at 605-215-3757.

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