Central Illinois Tornadoes on May 10, 2003

 
During the evening of May 10, several thunderstorm systems called "supercells" moved across western and central Illinois.  These supercells spawned a number of tornadoes across the area, most prevalent in a region from Rushville to Morton to Eureka (click for an image).  Survey results follow for Schuyler, Fulton, Mason, Tazewell, and Woodford Counties.  Radar images are on a separate page.

 
Tornado track across Schuyler County
Schuyler County (click image to enlarge.)

One tornado touched down in Schuyler County.

The tornado touched down 5 miles west of Rushville at 8:14 PM (a tornado warning for Schuyler County was issued at 7:35 PM).  The tornado moved east-northeast through rural parts of central Schuyler County.  The tornado lifted about 2.5 miles northwest of Rushville, northeast of  the intersection of US Highway 67 and Camden Road.  The Schuyler County ESDA director rated the tornado as F2 (about 120 mph), and the tornado was about 150 yards wide.  Photographic evidence confirms this rating.  The total length of the tornado's path was about 7 miles.

No injuries were reported in Schuyler County.


 
Tornado Tracks Across Fulton County
Southern Fulton County (click image to enlarge.)

Two tornadoes touched down in southern Fulton County.

The first tornado touched down about 2 miles southwest of Ipava around 8:32 PM.  (A tornado warning had been in effect since 7:49 PM.)  The tornado moved northeast, through the center of Ipava.  It lifted about 1 mile northeast of Ipava.  The tornado was rated as F1 (about 100 mph), and was about 400 yards wide.  The total length of the tornado's path was about 3 miles.

The second tornado touched down 1/2 mile south of Astoria around 8:47 PM.  The tornado moved east-northeast along US Highway 24, lifting about 2.5 miles east northeast of Astoria.  This tornado was rated as F1 (80 mph winds) and was about 100 yards wide.  The total length of the tornado's path was 3 miles.

No injuries were reported in Fulton County.


 
Graphic of Tornado Tracks in Mason County
Northern Mason County (click image to enlarge.)

Three tornadoes touched down in Mason County.

The first tornado touched down 1 mile north of Havana, in the Quiver Beach area, around 9:12 PM.  A tornado warning for Mason County had been in effect since 8:42 PM.  The tornado was on the ground for 9 miles, finally lifting 4 miles west of Forest City.  The tornado was estimated to be 100 to 150 yards wide, and was rated as F1 on the Fujita Scale (estimated winds of 90 mph).

The second tornado touched down 2 miles southwest of Manito around 9:33 PM and was on the ground for 2 miles, moving into Manito and lifting just east of town.  The tornado hit Manito at 9:35 PM.  The tornado was estimated to be 100 yards wide, and was rated as F2 (estimated winds of 120 to 130 mph).

The third tornado touched down one mile east of Manito around 9:35 PM, and was on the ground for 2 miles.  It lifted about 3 miles east northeast of Manito.  This tornado was estimated to be about 100 yards wide, and was rated as F1 (estimated winds of 90 to 100 mph).

No injuries were reported in Mason County.


 
Graphic of Tornado Tracks in Tazewell County
Northern Tazewell County (click image to enlarge.)

A long track tornado was found in Tazewell County.  This tornado touched down initially 3 miles southwest of South Pekin around 9:45 PM.  (A tornado warning for Tazewell County had been in effect since 9:15 PM).  It was initially of F0 intensity (winds less than 73 mph) and was about 50 yards wide.  The tornado moved northeast, and strengthened rapidly to F2 intensity about 2 miles southwest of South Pekin, as it crossed Highway 29.  It continued to strengthen, and was at F3 intensity (estimated winds of 200 mph) as it went through South Pekin at 9:50 PM.  At this point, the tornado was a quarter mile wide.  It remained F3 intensity for about 2.5 miles, although the width decreased to 200 yards.  There were 23 injuries reported in South Pekin.

The tornado continued on the ground at F2 intensity to a point about 1.5 miles northeast of Groveland, gradually becoming smaller and only 100 yards wide.  West of Morton, the tornado weakened to F1 intensity and was only 50 yards wide.  The tornado then turned more to the north-northeast, and crossed I-74 at the I-155 intersection around 10:05 PM.  Just beyond this intersection on the northwest side of Morton, the tornado quickly strengthened back to F2 intensity and severely damaged a concrete plant and the Cape Cod Apartment complex.  After exiting the complex, the tornado gradually weakened back to F1 strength and dissipated on the far northern edge of Morton.  There were 8 injuries in Morton, including in a vehicle on I-74.

This tornado was on the ground for 19 miles, and reached a maximum intensity of F3 (200 mph), with a maximum width of 1/4 mile in the city of South Pekin.

A second tornado then developed in Tazewell County 3 miles north of Morton, around 10:16 PM.  It was on the ground for 1 mile, and lifted and dissipated 4 miles north northeast of Morton.  It was rated F1 (100 mph) and was 100 yards wide.


 
Tornado Tracks Across Woodford County
Tazewell and Woodford Counties (click image to enlarge.)

Two tornadoes went through Woodford County, one of which started in extreme northeast Tazewell County.

The first tornado touched down 3 miles southeast of Washington in Tazewell County around 10:18 PM.  (A tornado warning had been in effect for Tazewell County since 9:15 PM.)  The tornado was on the ground for 2 miles before crossing into Woodford County (where a tornado warning had been in effect since 10:03 PM).  In Tazewell County, the tornado was rated as F0 (70 mph), and 100 yards wide.

In Woodford County, the storm quickly intensified as it crossed US Highway 24.  At that time, it was 300 yards wide, and rated an F2 on the Fujita Scale (winds about 130 mph).  After about a mile at that strength, the tornado weakened to F1 intensity (90 mph) and 100 yards wide.  The tornado continued to move northeast, through the area one mile north of Eureka to about 2 miles southwest of Roanoke.  At that point, it weakened again to F0 intensity (70 mph), and still was 100 yards wide.  It continued northeast to an area about 1 mile north of Roanoke, where it dissipated.  The total length of the tornado's path was 12.5 miles.

A second tornado touched down 2 miles east of  Eureka, around 10:25 PM.  It traveled northeast for 2 miles, at F1 intensity (80 mph), and 100 to 200 yards wide.  It then weakened to F0 intensity (70 mph) with a width of 100 yards, and continued to the northeast.  It reached the area 2 miles east of Roanoke, then lifted at a point 3 miles northeast of Roanoke.  The total length of this tornado's path was 8 miles.

The tornadoes injured 4 people in Woodford County.


 
Pictures: (click to enlarge)
Damaged house in Manito
Manito
Remains of a house in South Pekin
South Pekin
Car thrown into a field in South Pekin
South Pekin
SUV wrapped around a tree in South Pekin
South Pekin
Track of tornado in the field as it entered South Pekin
South Pekin
 
Remains of houses in South Pekin
South Pekin
 
High-voltage tower crumpled by tornado
Southeast of
Pekin Heights
Radio towers downed by tornado
South of Groveland
 
House missing its roof and top floor
West of Morton
Cape Cod Apartments in Morton
Morton>
Projectile speared into the side of a building
Morton
Roof collapse over a garage
Morton
Car overturned in Morton
Morton
 
Tornado west of Rushville
West of Rushville
(photo by Keenan
Campbell)
Damaged barn west of Rushville
West of Rushville
(photo by Rich Utter)
Damaged home west of Rushville
West of Rushville
(photo by Rich Utter)
Roof Torn off a House in Ipava
Ipava
Damaged Firehouse in Ipava
Ipava
House Damaged in Ipava
Ipava
Remains of a Building in Ipava
Ipava
Object driven into a tree
Woodford County
Damaged Civil-War era house
West of Eureka
   
 
 
 


 


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