The powerful thunderstorm that rumbled through Sheridan County in northeastern Montana late Monday night did extensive damage and eventually developed into an EF-2 tornado that caused injuries to more than two dozen people in North Dakota.
The storm rolled through Watford City, N.D., just after midnight and an RV park was especially hard-hit, with at least 28 people requiring medical treatment, according to the Bismarck Tribune. The newspaper reported confirmation of an EF-2 tornado, which means winds in the 115 mph range.
The biggest need right now is going to be for housing,” Gretchen Hjelmstad, communications officer for Dakota Region of the Red Cross, told Amy Dalrymple of the Bismarck Tribune. “Many people have just lost everything.”
The EF scale to measure tornadoes goes up to EF-5, which means winds in the 200 mph range.
The National Weather Service had a survey team looking through the damage in the Plentywood and Outlook areas in Montana on Tuesday.
“The storm was amazing,” said Ted Jamba, meteorologist with the NWS in Glasgow.
According to Rex Morgan of NWS Glasgow, an F-1 tornado touched down near Plentywood just after 7 p.m. with winds of about 110 miles per hour, destroying a mobile home and two outbuildings.
No significant injuries were reported in the area despite the structural damage, Morgan told the Tribune Tuesday evening.
Several empty trailers were flipped over and several businesses sustained damage, including a restaurant which had its front door and several windows blown out. Part of the roof was also torn off, Morgan said.
A Plentywood family took shelter under a pickup truck during the storm as winds destroyed their trailer house, the Associated Press reported.
Several storms raged in the Plentywood area Monday evening, with hail in the 1.5- to 1.75-inch range and severe winds.
NWS Glasgow also reported that eight hangers at the airport were totaled and six others received minor to moderate damage, while 10 general aviation planes were significantly damaged or destroyed.
Sheridan County officials say three transmission lines were damaged by Monday’s storms and power remained out Tuesday in Plentywood and Outlook as temperatures were forecast to reach into the high 90s or low 100s, according to the Associated Press report.
The region experienced more severe weather on Tuesday with winds reaching up to 70 miles per hour in the Glasgow area, Morgan said, but there were no reports of tornadic activity.