Here’s video of the storm coming thru the area. Here’s a map of the Preservation Lakes subdivision – just east of Eastern and just north of 100th St. in southern Kent County. Here’s the National Weather Service initial local storm report:
Sunday AM statement from the G.R. NWS: “Thunderstorms moved through West Michigan on Saturday afternoon, April 10. Here is what we know so far: – Wind gusts between 35 and 45 mph were measured in Kalamazoo, Allegan, Hopkins, Kent City, Hudsonville, Holland, Ionia, and Sparta. There were a few reports of a tree or two which fell within Allegan county, which is what we typically expect from winds this strong. – An area of stronger damage occurred in a neighborhood in Gaines Township, Kent County. A small section of roof was lifted off of one home, vinyl siding was peeled off another home, a garage door was bent and almost blown in at another home, and construction plywood and porch furniture were shuffled around the neighborhood. Some trees were snapped or uprooted which brought down wires and knocked out electrical service. – We issued statements before the storm arrived saying gusty winds in excess of 40 mph were possible, and people were advised to move indoors (which is always good advice for any storm with lightning). Weak rotation was seen on radar over Gaines Twp, prompting us to issue a Severe Thunderstorm Warning for the greater Grand Rapids area, mentioning that 60 mph winds were possible and tornadoes can sometimes develop quickly from these types of storms. – The atmospheric ingredients had temporarily come together in just the right way over Kent County to support one or two brief and relatively weak tornado “spin-ups,” capable of producing damage similar to a typical severe thunderstorm. The atmospheric ingredients fortunately did not support violent or long-lived tornadoes. Severe thunderstorm precautions include going into a lower level of a well-built building and staying away from windows, as most storm damage in Michigan is usually due to trees falling. – We are reviewing all photos and video from storm spotters and homeowners, plus some of our meteorologists are surveying the damage in person. A review of atmospheric ingredients, radar data, videos, and damage surveys paints the most complete picture, but this takes time. We will have more information soon.”
Over 5,000 Consumers Energy customers were without power after the storms. The largest outage was in NW Kalamazoo and NE Van Buren Counties, where 3,863 customers lost power due to a tree limb (or limbs) hitting a power line.
The storms produced small hail in Cutlerville and East Grand Rapids. Wind gusts hit 48 mph in Battle Creek, 47 mph at Jackson, 46 mph at the Kalamazoo Airport, 43 mph at Lansing, 42 mph in Kent City, 41 mph in Allegan and 35 mph in Holland.
Thanks to Brennan Prill and Mike Gorman for the pics. and video.
Michigan averages 16 tornadoes per year. Last year there were 2 very small and brief spin-ups in Upper Michigan, but no tornadoes in Lower Michigan. Most of the tornadoes we get are small and short-lived. Remember the small tornadoes that hit August 20, 2016.. the Portland MI twister of June 2015…and the “Ideal Park Tornado” in 2014.
Here’s storm reports from Saturday 4/10. Most of the severe weather was in the southeast. The lone exception (red dot on the map) was the tornado south of Cutlerville.