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Twister damages RR, North PlatteTell North Platte what you think
Photo by Nolan Ross
Coal cars, Bailey Yard
Photo by Shamaree Spath
Funnel in Bailey Yard
Photo by Shamaree Spath
A few moments later
Photo by George Lauby
Hanna Herrick, 8, stands atop tree roots Saturday just north of Bailey Yard.

Fourteen empty coal cars were overturned at Bailey Yard Friday night when a turbulent, twisting cloud swept around the west and north parts of town.

The funnel-like cloud did not touch down but uprooted trees and damaged some homes and vehicles.

The railroad cars went over on their side about 8:30 p.m. when a dark cloud swirled through the yard.

The same funnel tail went through Lou Herrick’s front yard just south of Rodeo Road, uprooting several trees, including a large cottonwood 30 feet from his front door. No one was injured.

Several trees were also ripped up in Cody Park, including one recently dedicated to the memory of Doug Watson, a long-time community member and manager of Nebraska’s district 9 probation office.

Winds as strong as 70 miles per hour were reported in Hershey, according to the National Weather Service in North Platte.

Electricity was out in some parts of town until the middle of the night, and in some cases, until midday Saturday.

Don Kurre at 1110 West Third reported two large pine trees were torn down in his yard.

A resident at 820 E. 10th said a tree snapped off about 4 feet above the ground, flew over the house and landed on the other side.

"There is no way that could have happened unless it was a tornado," he said.

A hard fast rain accompanied the storm. Slightly less than an inch fell in an hour at the weather station at the North Platte Regional Airport/Lee Bird Field.

The severe storm swept across western Nebraska at 50 miles an hour.

Reports to weather service:

> 4 p.m. - Funnel cloud, 4.5 miles southeast of Chappell

> 6 p.m. - Five minutes of half-dollar hail, some the size of softballs, plus four inches of rain, two miles southeast of Leymoyne.

> 7:15 p.m. - numerous trees down, some on cars and homes. Campers overturned, and 30 power poles downed west of Imperial.

> 8:10 p.m. - 70 mph winds, Hershey.

> 8:22 p.m. - trees uprooted or knocked down in Hershey. Two homes damaged by strong winds, two miles east and six miles south of town.

> 8:25 p.m. – Large pine tree down, Second and Grant, 20 inches in diameter.

> 8:30 p.m. (time approximate) - Large tree on house near the North Platte River bridge.

> 8:41 p.m. - Wind gust 70 mph, Hershey. Tree limbs greater than three inches in diameter down

> 8:41 p.m. - Possible funnel cloud on U.S. Highway 83, just north of North Platte.

Have storm damage? Tell everyone with a talkback. Thanks much to all those who sent us photos. -- Editor.

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The North Platte Bulletin - Published 6/27/2009
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