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Six tornadoes touched down in northeastern North Dakota, northwestern Minnesota during Monday night supercell cluster

Several structures and numerous trees were damaged in the storm, but no injuries or deaths were reported.

The National Weather Service has confirmed six tornadoes touched down in the region during a cluster of powerful supercell thunderstorms Monday evening, Aug. 9.

The first tornado of the night touched down just after 7:15 p.m. near Starkweather, N.D., in Towner and Ramsey counties, and was on the ground for about seven minutes, reaching wind speeds of up to 90 mph, snapping or uprooting several large trees in its path.

At 8:34 p.m., a second tornado touched down for about one minute in an open field in Griggs County near Binford, N.D. It's estimated winds reached up to 75 mph before the tornado became wrapped in rain.

The strongest tornado of the night touched down for eight minutes at 9:20 p.m. near Sharon, N.D., in Steele County. Peak winds were estimated at 115 mph, and the tornado traveled on the ground for about three miles, reaching a maximum width of 300 yards. It completely dismantled and destroyed a barn and uprooted numerous trees.

At 9:42 p.m., a fourth tornado touched down for about one minute west of Northwood, N.D., in Grand Forks County. The tornado reached maximum wind speeds of 90 mph and a maximum width of 150 yards, and snapped or uprooted numerous cottonwood trees in a shelterbelt.


The fifth tornado touched down for six minutes at 10:55 p.m. near Davidson, Minn., in Polk County. Wind speeds reached up to 105 mph, and the tornado caused significant damage to a farmstead, blowing out two walls and a roof of a pole shed, peeling up steel siding and roofing on other farm buildings and breaking down several trees. It spread debris to the east and southeast for up to 500 yards as it traveled east, and tore off roof trim, shingles and siding at three other farmsteads along its path.

The final tornado touched down at 11:05 p.m. near Key West, Minn., in Polk County, and was on the ground for about four minutes. Wind speeds reached 80 mph, and the tornado damaged several trees and cracked a power pole near its base.

No injuries were reported in any of the tornadoes.

WDAY StormTracker meteorologist Jared Piepenburg said a single supercell thunderstorm cluster producing this many tornadoes isn't unheard of, but it is uncommon. The length and intensity of the storm was particularly striking, he added.

"Just being a meteorologist and watching that form and then stick together for so many hours is always neat," he said. "It's pretty cool to see that come together. Of course, you don't want any damage or anything like that, but as meteorologists it's pretty interesting and neat to see it."

Piepenburg added that while the storms brought significant rainfall to the upper Red River Valley -- 1.5 to 2 inches near Grand Forks and 3 to 4 inches near Langdon, N.D. -- they did little to help overall drought conditions in the area.

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