Forget the Snow, 1 Year Ago Minnesota's Earliest Tornado Touched Down

March 06, 2018 05:10 PM

The video above is from a March 2017 report.

A year ago Tuesday, the earliest recorded tornado in the state touched down in central Minnesota.


The tornado, which the National Weather Service later classified as an EF-1, touched down near Zimmerman and Clarks Grove.

The touch down shattered the previous record set, which was March 18, 1986.

RELATED: Witnesses Say Tornado Touches Down Near Zimmerman, Would Mark State Record

KSTP Chief Meteorologist Dave Dahl said he was shocked severe weather hit so early. Dahl said that spring was not unusually warm, but temperatures rose enough during that time to create such severe weather.

"It was very, very early and way out of season," Dahl said. "The first severe weather we usually see is at the end of Marc, but we usually don't see it until April or May."

RELATED: NWS Confirms Record-Early Tornadoes Near Zimmerman, Clarks Grove

The tornado, which landed in Sherburne County, had peak winds of 107 mph and was on the ground for 13 minutes, traveling 8.9 miles.

One family that spoke to KSTP said they remember hearing "loud whistling" as they took cover in their basement. When they emerged, they found trees uprooted all over their property.

"My stomach's been kind of flip-flopping all day, worrying," Tony Molitor said.

RELATED: Residents Emerge from Record-Early Tornadoes, Assess Damages


Ben Rodgers

Copyright 2018 - KSTP-TV, LLC A Hubbard Broadcasting Company


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