This morning there are estimates that 3 tornadoes may have struck the greater St. Louis area last night. This was the same supercell that we spent 3 hours tracking across Missouri ourselves. The damage, for the most part, was not serious. But photos submitted to the National Weather Service in Saint Louis show some more serious tornadic winds did hit some areas. In the picture to the right, you can see a structure destroyed and some walls that have collapsed.
I’m not an expert at determining the damage and wind from these tornadoes, but my unprofessional opinion would estimate an EF-3 strength tornado did this. Again that’s a very uneducated guess because I don’t know exactly what type of building this was before the storm. Survey teams will fan out today and we should learn tonight or tomorrow morning how strong these tornadoes were. Overall much of the damage will likely be classified as EF-1 or EF-2 damage. But all it takes is one building that looks like this to earn a tornado a stronger classification.
Fortunately this morning it appears all the injuries from these storms were minor. That’s the best news you can ask for when a storm this powerful slams into a major metropolitan area like St. Louis.
As storm chasers, we couldn’t have asked for a better storm to track for hours on end, but what doomed us on our chase was the poor road networks that prevented us from properly tracking the storm and made it nearly impossible for us to continue tracking the storm as it moved into St. Louis. Despite the troubles, we did manage to get some good pictures and video which you can see by checking out our facebook fan page.