Tornadoes and Flooding Strike Republic County
Six tornadoes struck Republic county during the evening hours of Sunday June 22. Three of the tornadoes were weak F0 tornadoes that were on the ground for less than a mile. There were two F1 tornadoes that were on the ground for 2 to 3 miles and one F2 tornado that was on the ground for four miles before it moved into Nebraska. A summary of the tornadoes can be found here. The tornadoes were clustered in an area that extended from Courtland to Republic to Byron, Nebraska. Most the damage was to outbuildings although one house was destroyed northeast of Republic. Large hail was also reported across parts of the county, with hail up to the size of golf balls being reported just east of the town of Republic.
In addition to the tornadoes, torrential rains also occurred across Republic county. Radar indicated that the northwest corner of Republic county may have received in excess of 10 inches of rain Sunday evening and Monday morning. Courtland reported 7.30 inches of rain while Scandia reported 6.12 inches. Major flooding occurred along the Republican River with numerous people being evacuated. The river swelled to a mile wide near Scandia during the peak of the flooding. Across northern sections of Republic county, numerous gravel roads were reported to be washed out and many fields had been flooded.
WSR-88D Radar storm relative velocity image from 828 pm of the tornadic storm over Republic county. Strong rotation can be seen just southeast of the town of Republic. A tornado was reported 3 miles southwest of the town of Republic at 820 pm.
WSR-88D Radar 24 hour rainfall accumulation ending at 7 am Monday morning. The pinkish color indicates rainfall in excess of 12 inches. The rainfall estimates were about 25% too high across Republic county.
Some photos of damage and flooding across Republic county from the storms of June 22 and 23 2003.