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BLOOMINGTON — Multiple tornadoes were sighted across Central Illinois Saturday evening, with one causing damage near LeRoy.

According to the National Weather Service in Lincoln, a tornado was on the ground just north of LeRoy at 7:20 p.m.

The storm weakened as it passed through LeRoy, but roof damage was reported about 4 miles north of town. Ed Shimon, a meteorologist in Lincoln, said the wind likely pulled all or part of the roof from the house.

Initial reports also suggested a barn on the property was damaged. Damage also was reported in an area west of Colfax.

When the tornado moved north, radar indicated debris damage 3 miles west of Colfax, but no structure damage had been identified Saturday night, Shimon said.

No injuries were reported in the McLean County area Saturday, and the storm had moved north out of the county by about 8:30 p.m.

McLean and DeWitt counties were under tornado warnings and several surrounding counties, including Logan, Macon, Tazewell and Woodford, were under tornado watches throughout the storm.

Flash flooding was reported in Pekin and East Peoria with 3 feet of water on some streets, causing cars to stall.

Details were limited Saturday night as emergency responders drove around eastern McLean County in search of damage and debris. They said more information will be available when the area can be seen in daylight.

Elsewhere in the region, NWS said multiple tornadoes touched down, damaging dozens of structures and injuring at least 20 people.

Meteorologist Chris Geelhart said the twisters occurred Saturday evening along the Illinois River and near Springfield. Geelhart says the exact number of tornadoes won't be known until crews survey the damage, beginning Sunday.

One of the towns hardest hit was Taylorville, about 25 miles southeast of Springfield. No fatalities have been reported, but Geelhart said three people were transferred to a Springfield hospital in critical condition.

Gov. Bruce Rauner activated the State Emergency Operations Center in response to the storms. Several agencies report to the operations center, including the Illinois Emergency Management Agency, Department of Public Health and the American Red Cross.

On Sunday, the National Weather Service says there is a chance of rain, but there will not be any severe weather like Saturday night. The high temperature will be 44 degrees.

There is a chance of rain or snow on Monday, likely between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m., said the service. The high will be 35 degrees.

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Contact Kelsey Watznauer at (309) 820-3254. Follow her on Twitter: @kwatznauer.


Education/Public Safety Reporter

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