SPEARFISH — National Weather Service officials in Rapid City said Monday’s tornado in the Northern Hills was an EF2 based upon the enhanced Fujita scale.
It was the second tornado of the day spawned from strong thunderstorms in the region.
The storms developed in northeastern Wyoming and southeastern Montana. When they merged, they strengthened and traveled toward the Black Hills.
The first tornado was reported from 5:26-5:34 p.m., north, northwest of New Haven, Wyo., in a largely unpopulated area.
The Weather Service report indicated that since there was to a lack of discernible damage, an official rating for the tornado could not be determined although the tornado’s track was 3.68 miles long and 50 yards wide
The second tornado struck south of Cement Ridge at 6:38 p.m. It was on the ground for about 20 minutes and seven miles crossing the state line from Crook County into Lawrence County.
“The scope of tree damage, with a swath nearly half a mile wide at times, indicated that this was a significant tornado,” according to the National Weather Service. “This damage was consistent with estimated maximum wind gusts of 120 mph, corresponding to an enhanced Fujita scale rating of EF2.”
The tornado’s path was about 770 yards wide.
Along with the tornados the storm packed baseball-sized hail in some areas along with strong winds up to 75 mph.
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