September 2, 2014 at 10:13 pm

Severe storms produce tornadoes, knock out power to thousands in Michigan

The same storm system that drenched southeast Michigan on Labor Day launched four tornadoes in northern Michigan.

The twisters struck four different counties with a half-dozen homes damaged by falling trees, according to the National Weather Service.

No injuries were reported as all four tornadoes landed within an hour of each other in sparsely populated areas.

It was the biggest outbreak of tornadoes in northern Michigan since 2007, when six struck, said the weather service.

“Multiple tornadoes in northern Michigan are abnormal anytime of the year,” said Justin Arnott, a meteorologist at the weather service station in Gaylord.

The tornadoes, reaching winds of 110 mph, struck Kalkaska County just north of Manistee Lake at 1:47 p.m., Crawford County near Frederic at 2:16 p.m., Otsego County near Little Bass Lake at 2:38 pm. and Cheboygan County near Wildwood Lake at 2:43 p.m.

The thunderstorms that swept through Metro Detroit on Monday night left up to 15,000 homes and businesses without power, but that number has been reduced to 3,000 Tuesday morning, according to DTE Energy Co.

The storms dumped anywhere from ˝ to 1˝ inches of rain in just about two hours, according to Dan Thompson, meteorologist with the National Weather Service.

“We received 1˝ inches in about 45 minutes here in White Lake Township,” Thompson said. “It really came down pretty quick.”

The Michigan Department of Transportation reported flooding on a number of freeways Monday night, including Interstate 75 at the Lodge, the Lodge at Bagley, the Southfield at Grand River and the Southfield at McNichols.

According to the NWS, the areas receiving the most rain included the northwest area of Wayne County and the central portion of Oakland County.

A check of the DTE outage map shows outages scattered across Metro Detroit including large sections near Fenkell and Outer Drive, West McNichols and Outer Drive and Telegraph and Grand River.

There were no flood watches or warnings nor was there any hail. There were reports of wind gusts of up to 45 mph.

“Wednesday will be nice with highs in the low 80s and less humidity,” Thompson said.
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