The National Weather Service now believes at least three tornadoes touched down in the Chicago area during an outbreak of severe weather Saturday, with straight-line winds also causing damage in Rockford.
According to authorities, one of the three EF-0 tornadoes touched down in suburban Oak Brook, while the other two tornadoes touched down in different parts of Boone County.
The first tornado touched down in Oak Brook near a Hilton hotel and the Willow Crest Golf Club, according to authorities. That tornado, categorized as an EF-0 tornado on the Enhanced Fujita Scale, packed estimated maximum wind speeds of 75 miles per hour and reached a maximum width of 60 yards.
The tornado was on the ground for about 1.9 miles, and as it was, it snapped tree limbs and caused the roof of an outbuilding on the golf course to collapse. He was on the ground for three minutes before getting up.
A second EF-0 tornado was reported in Boone County near Timberlane. That tornado, which reached an estimated maximum wind speed of 80 miles per hour, was on the ground for about a minute at 5:55 p.m. and traveled half a mile, reaching a maximum width of 60 yards.
Several trees were uprooted and snapped early in the tornado’s path, and several floating docks were tossed onto Candlewick Lake, officials said.
A third tornado was reported approximately 12 minutes later in Capron. The extremely brief tornado touched down in an open field near the intersection of Coon Trail and Capron Roads, causing no known damage, with unknown wind speed and width.
Officials also said that after a thorough investigation, using drone imagery from the Rockford Fire Department and Doppler radar data from Chicago and Milwaukee, the storm damage in Rockford was not caused by a tornado, but by straight line winds that exceeded 70 miles. per hour.
Straight line winds caused the roof of a building to collapse near the intersection of 9the and Broadway streets in Rockford. The winds also caused additional roof damage to other buildings and snapped power poles and tree limbs in the area.
All data is preliminary and subject to change.