Burlington-area residents get to basement just in time as tornado hits

  • An uprooted pine tree sits along Plank Road just west of Burlington following a storm Monday evening.

    An uprooted pine tree sits along Plank Road just west of Burlington following a storm Monday evening. Paul Valade | Staff Photographer

  • Jimmy Darnell, left, looks over the damaged shed caused by a storm Monday evening at his Plank Road home near Burlington. Darnell said he saw a tornado approach before he and his family safely made it to the basement.

    Jimmy Darnell, left, looks over the damaged shed caused by a storm Monday evening at his Plank Road home near Burlington. Darnell said he saw a tornado approach before he and his family safely made it to the basement. Paul Valade | Staff Photographer

  • A car was damaged from a storm at the Darnell family's home along Plank Road Monday evening near Burlington.

    A car was damaged from a storm at the Darnell family's home along Plank Road Monday evening near Burlington. Paul Valade | Staff Photographer

  • ComEd crews work to restore power along Plank Road west of Burlington following a severe storm.

    ComEd crews work to restore power along Plank Road west of Burlington following a severe storm. Paul Valade | Staff Photographer

  • Barns were damaged and debris blown into a nearby field along Plank Road west of Burlington following a storm Monday evening.

    Barns were damaged and debris blown into a nearby field along Plank Road west of Burlington following a storm Monday evening. Paul Valade | Staff Photographer

  • Multiple trees were damaged from a Monday evening storm along Plank Road west of Burlington.

    Multiple trees were damaged from a Monday evening storm along Plank Road west of Burlington. Paul Valade | Staff Photographer

  • A car was damaged from a storm Monday evening along Plank Road just west of Burlington.

    A car was damaged from a storm Monday evening along Plank Road just west of Burlington. Paul Valade | Staff Photographer

  • A car plows through a flooded intersection Monday on Glen Avenue in Crystal Lake after heavy rains fell in the suburbs.

    A car plows through a flooded intersection Monday on Glen Avenue in Crystal Lake after heavy rains fell in the suburbs. Paul Valade | Staff Photographer

  • North Hale Street in Palatine flooded Monday as heavy rains fell in the area. Residents say flooding on their street is an ongoing problem.

    North Hale Street in Palatine flooded Monday as heavy rains fell in the area. Residents say flooding on their street is an ongoing problem. Courtesy of Jim Capalbo

  • Storm clouds over the Baker Memorial Untied Methodist Church in St. Charles area Monday evening.

    Storm clouds over the Baker Memorial Untied Methodist Church in St. Charles area Monday evening. John Starks | Staff Photographer

  • Storm clouds over the St. Charles area looking west on Route 64 near downtown Monday evening.

    Storm clouds over the St. Charles area looking west on Route 64 near downtown Monday evening. John Starks | Staff Photographer

 
 
Updated 8/9/2021 9:46 PM

Jimmy Darnell saw a tornado heading his way early Monday evening.

He guessed it was about two miles to the west of his Plank Road home in Burlington. He had just enough time to get his family to safety in the basement.

 

"As soon as we hit the bottom stairs down there the tornado hit," Darnell said. "Lights shut off, you heard banging, the house was shaking.

"We waited about five minutes until everything calmed down and came up to assess the damage and let the family know it was OK."

The Darnells lost a shed and multiple trees. The storm also smashed a window of the family car.

Some six homes were damaged along Plank Road about two miles west of downtown Burlington. The damage stretched about a half a mile, east and west of the Plank Road and Engle Road intersection.

The winds blew roofs off homes and barns, snapped trees in half and scattered debris across on the nearby fields.

ComEd workers were on the scene to restore power. As of 8:36 p.m. Monday, 814 customers in northeastern Illinois were without power, according to ComEd's website.

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There were no immediate reports of injuries.

A tornado was seen by weather spotters at 5:32 p.m. about seven miles northeast of Rochelle in Ogle County. About four minutes earlier, radar confirmed a tornado near Hampshire in Kane County, according to the National Weather Service website.

Heat advisories also are in effect until Tuesday night across north-central Illinois, northeast Illinois and northwest Indiana, the weather service said.

Heat indexes of 102-108 degrees Fahrenheit were expected, with the highest to south and west of Chicago.

•The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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