Monroe County picking up the pieces following Wednesday tornado

Published: Jun. 16, 2022 at 5:05 PM CDT
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MONROE COUNTY, Wis. (WEAU) - A batch of heavy storms impacted multiple areas of Wisconsin Wednesday, with rural parts of Monroe County receiving heavy damage.

The National Weather Service (NWS) in La Crosse confirmed an EF-2 tornado touched down in Monroe County shortly after 4 PM, travelling a 10 mile path before it dissipated.

“We estimate winds approximately 115 miles per hour for the strongest portion of the track,” detailed NWS Meteorologist Jeff Makowski.

Monroe County Emergency Management Director Jared Tessman says multiple areas of the county experienced damage to trees, power lines, and structures.

“We did have some damage that was first noticed in the Township of Tomah, and that did progressively get worse as it traveled to the north and to the east through the Township of Oakdale, into the Township of Byron,” Tessman recalled.

Tessman says no injuries were reported during the storm, and emergency management officials are determining the extent of the damage that occurred.

“We will be spending the bulk of our time today and over the next few days doing damage assessments, and coordinating any other resource needs that may come in,” Tessman said.

Gov. Tony Evers had a chance to see the damage first-hand Thursday following a tour of small businesses in Tomah.

Evers says the State is still determining whether homeowners in the affected areas will be in need of recovery assistance.

“Before we say yes or no on the day after, we have to do the due diligence,” Evers expressed. “That means to sit down and figure out exactly how much damage there is, and I haven’t had any reports of that yet, and that usually takes a lot of time.”

Some portions of Monroe County are still without power following the storm, and Tessman says it could take up to 48 hours for the remaining damaged power lines to be fixed.

An additional tornado was also confirmed in Mauston Wednesday, which was rated at an EF-1 with maximum winds reaching 90 miles per hour.

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