The storms that hit northern Illinois and northern Indiana this week spawned two confirmed tornadoes, the National Weather Service has determined.
The more powerful of the two tornadoes hit 2-1/2 miles southwest of Shabbona, about 80 miles west of Chicago, at 4:32 p.m. on Wednesday, and reached an estimated maximum wind speed of 95 mph, according to a weather service bulletin. The tornado, which had a path about 100 yards wide, travelled for about 2-1/4 miles before dissipating about 3 miles southeast of Shabbona.
“The maximum damage occurred over an approximately one-mile-long segment of the path, where the tornado snapped numerous utility poles and about 80 percent of the large hardwood trees,” the weather service said in the statement.
Along with the tornado, the storms in the Shabbona area dropped large hail in a swath nearly a mile wide that smashed and shredded crops in the area.
That tornado touched down at a farmstead south of County Line Road and North 1500W in Kankakee County, collapsing a horse barn and killing a horse, according to the Weather Service. The tornado touched down about 7:50 p.m. and ended at 7:51 p.m.
In both areas, and throughout much of Kendall, DeKalb and Lee counties, weather service surveyors found damage from normal, or straight-line, winds, not tornadoes, according to the weather service.
There's some chance for thunderstorms west of the Fox River tonight, with increased chance of thunderstorms in the Chicago area Saturday afternoon and evening, according to the National Weather Service. There is some chance that the storms will become severe. A high of about 78 is expected today, with a high of about 82 on Saturday.
For an updated forecast, check the Tribune's weather page.