SEVERE WX : Flood Warning View Alerts
STREAMING NOW: Watch Now

Local Weather History: High Risk-Type Outbreak April 30, 1962

What would likely be a modern-day "SPC High Risk" day in our area, a significant severe weather outbreak struck the region.

Posted: Apr 30, 2020 5:15 PM
Updated: Apr 30, 2020 10:58 PM

A significant severe weather outbreak occurred in our area on April 30, 1962.  1 person was killed & at least 14 people were injured.  Total damage in the area (inflation-adjusted) was +$5 million.

The U.S. Weather Bureau surveys at the time reported that the damage in eastern Illinois to Indiana was +90% from significant straight-line winds & not tornadoes.

Outbreak began in the midday to afternoon with surface low in Illinois & strong surface cold front & passed through our area in the 2-3:15 p.m. time frame.

Temperatures ahead of the low & front surged to unseasonably warm levels well into the 80s to around 90.  Chicago reached 88, Fort Wayne & Indianapolis 87 & highs reached up to 88 in the viewing area.

Even at 1 a.m. on May 1, the matured squall line was still going & lined up from Toledo, Ohio to Houston, Texas.

In this significant severe weather outbreak winds gusted 60-110 mph across central Illinois with isolated downburst gusts to 135 mph.  Winds gusted +100 mph in the viewing area. The line of storms brought widespread substantial to significant wind damage & 4 confirmed tornadoes.

An F2 tornado tracked through Newton County, while another F2 tornado in Jasper County did ¼ million dollars in damage. An F1 tornado in White County also did ¼ million dollars in damage. An F1 tornado roared through Miami County, while winds gusted to 85 mph in Cass County & 80 mph winds struck Warren & Fountain counties.  Outside of our area, an F3 tornado injured 49 people in St. Joseph County. 

However, the worst of the straight line wind damage was in Benton & White counties in a swath of 95-120 mph.

Winds likely peaked with macrobursts around Dunnington, Atkinson & Templeton to north of Montmorenci to near Chalmers where multiple steel, high-voltage towers were toppled & crumbled by +100 mph winds.  Multiple barns were also destroyed.  Several farmhouses saw significant roof damage.  Damage continued eastward to Cass & Miami counties.  Even at the Fort Wayne Airport, a wind gust of 89 mph was measured.  Multiple airplanes nearby were lifted up to 50' in the air.  One was destroyed. 

A similar wind situation occurred August 15, 2007 when intense downburst (embedded in 3- to 5-mile wide swath of +80 mph winds that tracked more than 70 miles) in southeast Porter County caused the same type of damage.  NWS Chicago indicated in their storm survey that winds peak at 100-120 mph.

Porter County Emergency management took this picture of the toppled high-voltage tranmission towers in the August 15, 2007 severe weather north of our area (courtesy NWS Chicago):

Several building suffered significant damage near Demotte with several people injured. 

Children were injured at Kentland Elementary School when a chimney crumbled, while a tractor trailer was overturned northeast of Kentland as a state tropper nearby spotted the tornado "full of lumber & debris".

A 3-year old children was picked up & carried away over fences & two blocks by the tornado at Peru.  She was found 30 minutes after the tornado passed, covered in mud & debris.  She was scared & leaning up against a house, but incredibly not seriously injured.

A high cement wall under construction collapsed on a worker northeast of Thorntown, crushing him.

Lafayette
Clear
27° wxIcon
Hi: 50° Lo: 25°
Feels Like: 27°
Kokomo
Partly Cloudy
21° wxIcon
Hi: 47° Lo: 22°
Feels Like: 21°
Rensselaer
Clear
23° wxIcon
Hi: 47° Lo: 22°
Feels Like: 23°
Lafayette
Clear
27° wxIcon
Hi: 48° Lo: 23°
Feels Like: 27°
Danville
Clear
27° wxIcon
Hi: 49° Lo: 26°
Feels Like: 19°
Frankfort
Clear
25° wxIcon
Hi: 48° Lo: 24°
Feels Like: 18°
Frankfort
Clear
25° wxIcon
Hi: 46° Lo: 23°
Feels Like: 18°
Monticello
Clear
21° wxIcon
Hi: 48° Lo: 24°
Feels Like: 21°
Monticello
Clear
21° wxIcon
Hi: 47° Lo: 23°
Feels Like: 21°
Logansport
Clear
23° wxIcon
Hi: 47° Lo: 23°
Feels Like: 23°
Dry, mild conditions continue
WLFI Radar
WLFI Temps
WLFI Planner

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 663511

Reported Deaths: 12633
CountyCasesDeaths
Marion908511647
Lake48510882
Allen35951638
Hamilton32138398
St. Joseph30096513
Elkhart25423417
Vanderburgh21283379
Tippecanoe20096203
Johnson16380360
Porter16009272
Hendricks15855300
Clark11999181
Madison11764319
Vigo11636230
Monroe10363163
Delaware9854179
LaPorte9790197
Howard9075198
Kosciusko8574111
Bartholomew7479147
Warrick7430151
Hancock7418132
Floyd7226170
Wayne6645192
Grant6437157
Boone610389
Morgan6103125
Dubois5923111
Dearborn549068
Cass545899
Marshall5432105
Henry542593
Noble510178
Jackson465167
Shelby461490
Lawrence4189113
Gibson401781
Harrison401064
Clinton396553
Montgomery388483
DeKalb386478
Miami357663
Knox357585
Whitley349837
Huntington346277
Steuben339255
Wabash332376
Putnam331159
Ripley327762
Adams323949
Jasper317043
White297452
Jefferson295474
Daviess285596
Fayette271956
Decatur271088
Greene261680
Posey261431
Wells258575
Scott251250
Clay241544
LaGrange241270
Randolph225576
Spencer218030
Jennings215744
Washington212127
Sullivan203639
Fountain201842
Starke188451
Owen182853
Fulton179337
Jay178328
Carroll176519
Perry173435
Orange171150
Rush165322
Vermillion160842
Franklin159535
Tipton146841
Parke139416
Pike127833
Blackford120727
Pulaski106744
Newton96632
Brown95139
Benton92213
Crawford91013
Martin80214
Warren75814
Switzerland7558
Union67310
Ohio53911
Unassigned0433

COVID-19 Important links and resources

As the spread of COVID-19, or as it's more commonly known as the coronavirus continues, this page will serve as your one-stop for the resources you need to stay informed and to keep you and your family safe. CLICK HERE

Closings related to the prevention of the COVID-19 can be found on our Closings page.

Community Events