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Severe storm hits Midwest

by Jorge Hernandez on October 27, 2010

The Midwestern states are recovering from a powerful, extremely low-pressure storm that hit the nation yesterday morning. No deaths were reported though hundreds of flights were canceled and residents saw considerable damage to their homes and vehicles.

The storm, which touched down at 7:40 a.m. on Tuesday, swept through northern Illinois and northwest Indiana. It was reportedly a result of a low-pressure system that originated in Nebraska and generated wind speeds of up to 82 miles per hour, according to The Associated Press.

The system's pressure was the lowest non-tropical pressure ever measured on the nation's mainland. It broke a record set during the Blizzard of 1978, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

At its height, the storm caused thunderstorm watches or warnings in at least 31 states. Over 300 flights were canceled at O'Hare International Airport. Delta Airlines canceled 95 national and regional flights, according to CNN.

The Christian Science Monitor reported that Tuesday's storm is the second strongest storm ever to hit the Great Lakes areas and surpassed the November 1975 storm over Lake Superior that sank the SS Edmund Fitzgerald.

"If it were colder, we'd have a blizzard with this system," David Imy, operations chief at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Storm Prediction Center, told the Associated Press.

The National Weather Service's Storm Prediction Center stated 268 reports of wind damage at the end of Tuesday. After a possible tornado passed through North Carolina, 11 people were reported injured. Several states reported damages to residents' homes and vehicles. In Chicago's DuPage Airport, single engine planes were flipped onto their sides.

Around 200,000 residents lost electrical power in Wisconsin, Indiana, Illinois, Ohio and parts of Missouri. Indiana and Illinois each had at least 60,000 power outages and 38,000 were reported in Ohio, reports CNN. 

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