IOWA DERECHO 2020

Derecho gusts hit 140 mph, National Weather Service says

Worst ripped through apartments in southwest Cedar Rapids

The roof is missing Monday from an apartment building at Cedar Terrace in southwest Cedar Rapids. The area was hit with
The roof is missing Monday from an apartment building at Cedar Terrace in southwest Cedar Rapids. The area was hit with wind gusts estimated of up to 140 mph, the National Weather Service said Wednesday. (Liz Martin/The Gazette)

Gusts from the Aug. 10 derecho storm were even stronger than initially thought and reached 140 mph in southwest Cedar Rapids, the National Weather Service said Wednesday in releasing revised estimates.

The weather service said damage the storm caused in parts of Benton, Linn, Jones, Cedar, and Clinton counties was consistent with straight-line winds gusting into the 100 to 130 mph range.

But the maximum estimated winds were about 140 mph, the weather service said, which caused severe damage to an apartment complex in southwest Cedar Rapids.

The weather service said the maximum winds reached the magnitude of an EF3 tornado.

The strongest wind gust measured — not estimated — was an unofficial 126 mph at Atkins in Linn County.

Radio transmission towers near Marion and Clinton collapsed due to peak winds estimated at about 130 mph, the weather service said, and gusts of 80 to 100 mph were common along the storm’s path.

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