Intense thunderstorms and tornadoes swept across the Midwest on Sunday, causing extensive damage in several central Illinois communities while sending people to their basements for shelter and even prompting officials at Soldier Field in Chicago to evacuate the stands and delay the Bears game.
The community of Washington in central Illinois appeared particularly hard-hit, with one resident saying his neighborhood was wiped out in a matter of seconds.
According to the report from the National Weather Service on Sunday, fifty three million people across the United States are in harm’s way as a powerful storm system will bring tornadoes and widespread damaging wind gusts to the Midwest. “We obviously have a very dangerous situation on our hands and it’s just getting started,” said Laura Furgione, deputy director of the National Weather Service.
Parts of the Great Lakes, Ohio Valley, lower-middle Mississippi Valley and Tennessee Valley are among the areas most at risk for widespread damaging winds and possible tornadoes, experts with the Weather Channel said.Bill Bunting, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service said one tornado was already reported shortly after noon in Peoria, Ill. The National Weather Service reported that the twister was moving northeast at about 55 miles per hour.
VIDEO: Soldier Field Evacuated