Area dodges significant crop damage in Wednesday’s storm

Authored by Jim Langham on Jul 12, 2013

There were a lot of nervous jitters among local farmers on Wednesday afternoon when a severe storm roared into Adams County with strong winds, torrential rains and some hail.
However, Jeff Lehman of Lehman Feed Mill, said the area faired pretty well compared to some neighboring communities.
“There was some corn down but most of it is coming back up,” said Lehman. “I think the wheat came out pretty well. There was some hail in the heaviest rain, but I don’t think it was intense enough to do a lot of damage.”
Lehman said that his office had heard anything between three-fourths of an inch and two inches of rain from the storm’s deluge. The storm was part of a line of severe weather that formed in western Indiana and quickly intensified as it moved across the state in mid-afternoon.
At one point, side by side severe storms, accompanied by warnings, were lined up the entire length between Fort Wayne and Lafayette. The National Weather service issued a report late yesterday afternoon stating their observation of an F-1 tornado in Miami County near Peru.
There was also significant damage and power outages in the Wabash/Huntington area. As the storms roared into Adams County, the skies darkened enough to trigger street lights in many areas. In Mercer and Auglaize counties in Ohio, the storms intensified even more. As a result, several fields, including two fields on Emerson Road located east of Wren, were totally flattened and corn stalks were broken off.
“It’s an awful sight to see a whole field go down like that,” said weather special Rick McCoy, who had personally examined the damage. “The report is that downed fields were more prevalent in southern Van Wert and significant parts of Mercer County.”
At Grand Lake Saint Marys, a water spout formed just off shore from Celina, drug across the lake and slammed into the southeast corner of the lake, causing heavy damage as it came ashore.
“A water spout is a tornado over water,” said McCoy. “Fortunately, there were some videos of this phenomenon. The water spout is clearly seen on some of them.”
McCoy said that it appears that there could have also been a short path tornado in a corn field just northeast of Van Wert.
“Of course, there were some real microbursts and strong straight line winds accompanying these storms,” said McCoy. “We know that we were getting wind gusts of at least 50 miles per hour or more in Van Wert County and I would imagine in portions of Adams County, too.”
The good thing about the line of storms was that it accompanied a strong air mass that significantly lowered temperatures and humidity across the area.
“This represents a significant change, now, in the weather pattern of rain and humidity that has hovered over the area for several days,” said McCoy. “It appears now that there will be many days of warm, dry weather, a real plus for area farmers who are concerned about getting their wheat in. It’s going to happen now.”

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