Severe storms blamed for 3 deaths in South Dakota, Minnesota

  • Live power lines and electricity poles fall into the street on Augustana University's campus on Thursday, May 12, 2022, in Sioux Falls, S.D.  Strong winds and possible tornadoes caused widespread damage in parts of the Midwest. (Erin Woodiel /The Argus Leader via AP)

    Live power lines and electricity poles fall into the street on Augustana University's campus on Thursday, May 12, 2022, in Sioux Falls, S.D. Strong winds and possible tornadoes caused widespread damage in parts of the Midwest. (Erin Woodiel /The Argus Leader via AP) Associated Press

  • Lightning illuminates inside a storm cell moving northward on Thursday, May 12, 2022, in Sioux Falls, S.D.  Strong winds and possible tornadoes caused widespread damage in parts of the Midwest. (Erin Woodiel /The Argus Leader via AP)

    Lightning illuminates inside a storm cell moving northward on Thursday, May 12, 2022, in Sioux Falls, S.D. Strong winds and possible tornadoes caused widespread damage in parts of the Midwest. (Erin Woodiel /The Argus Leader via AP) Associated Press

  • A tree limb has fallen in front of a home on Duluth Ave. on Thursday, May 12, 2022, in Sioux Falls, S.D.  Strong winds and possible tornadoes caused widespread damage in parts of the Midwest.(Erin Woodiel /The Argus Leader via AP)

    A tree limb has fallen in front of a home on Duluth Ave. on Thursday, May 12, 2022, in Sioux Falls, S.D. Strong winds and possible tornadoes caused widespread damage in parts of the Midwest.(Erin Woodiel /The Argus Leader via AP) Associated Press

  • Mary Jane Mercer, Sylvie Whitesel, Ruby Putzke and Lucas Kauffman play on a massive fallen tree blocking a road in their neighborhood on Thursday, May 12, 2022, in Sioux Falls, S.D. Strong winds and possible tornadoes caused widespread damage in parts of the Midwest.  (Erin Woodiel /The Argus Leader via AP)

    Mary Jane Mercer, Sylvie Whitesel, Ruby Putzke and Lucas Kauffman play on a massive fallen tree blocking a road in their neighborhood on Thursday, May 12, 2022, in Sioux Falls, S.D. Strong winds and possible tornadoes caused widespread damage in parts of the Midwest. (Erin Woodiel /The Argus Leader via AP) Associated Press

  • A broken tree is seen after severe storms on Thursday, May 12, 2022, in Sioux Falls, S.D.  Strong winds and possible tornadoes caused widespread damage in parts of the Midwest. (Erin Woodiel /The Argus Leader via AP)

    A broken tree is seen after severe storms on Thursday, May 12, 2022, in Sioux Falls, S.D. Strong winds and possible tornadoes caused widespread damage in parts of the Midwest. (Erin Woodiel /The Argus Leader via AP) Associated Press

  • Abbie Pagone fills a wheelbarrow with debris after a severe storm on Thursday, May 12, 2022, in Sioux Falls, S.D.  Strong winds and possible tornadoes caused widespread damage in parts of the Midwest. (Erin Woodiel /The Argus Leader via AP)

    Abbie Pagone fills a wheelbarrow with debris after a severe storm on Thursday, May 12, 2022, in Sioux Falls, S.D. Strong winds and possible tornadoes caused widespread damage in parts of the Midwest. (Erin Woodiel /The Argus Leader via AP) Associated Press

  • Neighbors look at storm damage in the McKennan neighborhood on Thursday, May 12, 2022, in Sioux Falls, S.D.  Strong winds and possible tornadoes caused widespread damage in parts of the Midwest.  (Erin Woodiel /The Argus Leader via AP)

    Neighbors look at storm damage in the McKennan neighborhood on Thursday, May 12, 2022, in Sioux Falls, S.D. Strong winds and possible tornadoes caused widespread damage in parts of the Midwest. (Erin Woodiel /The Argus Leader via AP) Associated Press

  • Josh Ferrie Sr., Christina Ferrie and Josh Ferrie Jr. clean debris from their front yard after a fallen power line hit one of their neighbors trees on Thursday, May 12, 2022, in Sioux Falls, S.D. Strong winds and possible tornadoes caused widespread damage in parts of the Midwest. (Erin Woodiel /The Argus Leader via AP)

    Josh Ferrie Sr., Christina Ferrie and Josh Ferrie Jr. clean debris from their front yard after a fallen power line hit one of their neighbors trees on Thursday, May 12, 2022, in Sioux Falls, S.D. Strong winds and possible tornadoes caused widespread damage in parts of the Midwest. (Erin Woodiel /The Argus Leader via AP) Associated Press

  • A walking path is blocked by fallen trees, pulled up at the roots, on Augustana University's campus on Thursday, May 12, 2022, in Sioux Falls, S.D.  Strong winds and possible tornadoes caused widespread damage in parts of the Midwest. (Erin Woodiel /The Argus Leader via AP)

    A walking path is blocked by fallen trees, pulled up at the roots, on Augustana University's campus on Thursday, May 12, 2022, in Sioux Falls, S.D. Strong winds and possible tornadoes caused widespread damage in parts of the Midwest. (Erin Woodiel /The Argus Leader via AP) Associated Press

  • Mary Osthus walks her dogs, Max and Rudy, in front of a damaged tree that fell perfectly between her house and her neighbor's on Thursday, May 12, 2022, in Sioux Falls, S.D. Strong winds and possible tornadoes caused widespread damage in parts of the Midwest. (Erin Woodiel/The Argus Leader via AP)

    Mary Osthus walks her dogs, Max and Rudy, in front of a damaged tree that fell perfectly between her house and her neighbor's on Thursday, May 12, 2022, in Sioux Falls, S.D. Strong winds and possible tornadoes caused widespread damage in parts of the Midwest. (Erin Woodiel/The Argus Leader via AP) Associated Press

  • A tree toppled by high winds from an overnight thunderstorm smashed into a house, splitting it in two Thursday, May 12, 2022 in Coon Rapids, Minn. Severe weather brought a mix of hail, tornadoes and heavy rain to Minnesota, causing widespread power outages, flooding and dangerous traveling conditions. It was the first of two nights of stormy weather expected in the Twin Cities and much of Minnesota. (David Joles/Star Tribune via AP)

    A tree toppled by high winds from an overnight thunderstorm smashed into a house, splitting it in two Thursday, May 12, 2022 in Coon Rapids, Minn. Severe weather brought a mix of hail, tornadoes and heavy rain to Minnesota, causing widespread power outages, flooding and dangerous traveling conditions. It was the first of two nights of stormy weather expected in the Twin Cities and much of Minnesota. (David Joles/Star Tribune via AP) Associated Press

  • A vehicle drives through a flooded parking lot off of University Avenue in St. Paul, Minn., during severe weather, Wednesday, May 11, 2022. (Renée Jones Schneider/Star Tribune via AP)

    A vehicle drives through a flooded parking lot off of University Avenue in St. Paul, Minn., during severe weather, Wednesday, May 11, 2022. (Renée Jones Schneider/Star Tribune via AP) Associated Press

  • Allianz Field is flooded during a storm on Wednesday, May 11, 2022 in St. Paul, Minn., was postponed due to severe weather. (Renée Jones Schneider/Star Tribune via AP)

    Allianz Field is flooded during a storm on Wednesday, May 11, 2022 in St. Paul, Minn., was postponed due to severe weather. (Renée Jones Schneider/Star Tribune via AP) Associated Press

 
 
Updated 5/13/2022 12:17 PM

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. -- Strong winds and a tornado caused widespread damage in parts of the Midwest, where officials said another round of severe weather during a stormy week left three more people dead.

In Minnesota, a grain bin fell onto a car Thursday and killed a passenger near Blomkest, the Kandiyohi County Sheriff's Office said. And a person died Thursday in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, as a result of severe weather, Mayor Paul TenHaken said, but details weren't released.

 

Also in South Dakota, Minnehaha County Sheriff Mike Milstead said Wendy Lape, 61, was traveling home to Wentworth with her husband in a vehicle about 5 p.m. Thursday when straight line-winds struck.

'The wall of dust and dirt and debris hit them. They slowed down to probably under 5 miles per hour because of the almost zero visibility from the blowing debris and a chunk of wood came through the window of the car,' Milstead said at a briefing in Sioux Falls Friday.

Lape died of her injuries Friday morning, officials said.

Earlier in the week, storms brought damaging winds, heavy rain and a few reports of tornadoes to Minnesota, where a storm-chasing meteorologist from Mexico City died Wednesday in a car crash - underscoring the dangers of pursuing severe weather. More storms were forecast for Friday from the Upper Great Lakes to the southern Great Plains that could bring damaging winds and hail.

South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem issued an emergency declaration and ordered state personnel and resources to affected communities. Noem said damage reports were received from 28 counties.

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'We have had many storms before, but the amount of communities that are impacted right now we just haven't seen in our state before,' Noem said at the briefing.

The Department of Public Safety's Office of Emergency Management has opened an Emergency Operations Center to coordinate the response with local government authorities.

Winds gusted Thursday above 100 mph (161 kph) in parts of South Dakota. National Weather Service meteorologist Todd Heitkamp, in Sioux Falls, said Friday that a tornado formed around Castlewood, but elsewhere the damage was caused by the strong wind.

On Thursday, a nursing home in Salem, South Dakota, sustained extensive damage when part of the roof was torn off. Residents were evacuated. The storm knocked out power to thousands of customers, including the South Dakota State University campus in Brookings.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

On Thursday night, Noem traveled to Castlewood, where a tornado ripped off the roof of a school and brought down walls.

Castlewood High School sophomore Erowyn Funge lives across the street from the school. She said that worst part of the storm lasted about 30 minutes, the Argus Leader reported.

'Our table went flying off our porch. It looked completely black outside,' said Funge.

Uprooted trees, branches and debris were scattered around Castlewood. Power lines were down, including across highways leading to town.

In Minnesota's Stevens County, winds approaching 70 mph (113 kph) toppled grain silos and pushed down storage sheds near Alberta. The Minnesota State Patrol closed eastbound Interstate 94 for several hours Thursday night after overturned trucks blocked the freeway.

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