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Tornadoes damage 600 acres of farmland in Minnesota

Iowa also experienced recent tornado activity

By Diego Flammini
Assistant Editor, North American Content

Two weekend tornadoes in Minnesota dropped large hail and damaged hundreds of acres of cropland.

The National Weather Service (NWS) confirmed two tornadoes touched down on Sunday in the state.

An EF-0 twister, with winds between 70 and 75 MPH, occurred west of Swan Lake in Nicollet County, just after 9:30 p.m.

NWS also confirmed an EF-1 tornado, with winds between 90 and 95 MPH, touched down about four miles north of Lake Crystal in Blue Earth County.

Damage caused by a tornado in Lake Crystal, Minnesota.
Photo: Fox 9/Bill Keller

The tornadoes flattened many crops, officials estimate.

“…several power poles were damaged or destroyed and approximately 600 acres of crops were flattened in that area,” the Blue Earth County Sheriff’s Office said in a July 9 release.

In addition to the tornadoes, the weather produced large pieces of hail.

“There were many reports of very large hail, in excess of 2 (inches) in diameter, with one report of a 4 (inch) hail stone,” the NWS said in its July 9 overview.

Minnesota isn’t the only state to experience recent tornado activity.

In Iowa, the town of Prairieburg continues to rebuild after a tornado destroyed the local grain elevator about two weeks ago.

Nagel Grain Inc. will try to rebuild the elevator by this fall, according to a July 10 KCRG-TV9 report.

A tornado damaged the Nagel Grain elevator in Prairieburg, Iowa.
Photo: Jim Slosiarek/The Gazette

Other farm buildings, including a horse barn, were destroyed during the Iowa tornado.

And Josh Plein lost one horse in the storm, according to The Gazette.

Parts of Iowa aren’t quite out of the woods yet when it comes to severe weather.

Many counties, including Decorah, Waterloo and Iowa City, are under severe weather outlooks.

“A brief tornado can’t be ruled out as well,” KCRG-TV9 meteorologist Chris Havely said early Tuesday afternoon. has reached out to the Iowa and Minnesota Farm Bureaus for information regarding potential support measures for impacted farmers.

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