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O Hare Airport

October 26, 2010 by USA Post 

O Hare Airport, (AP) – A storm comparisons muscled a hurricane in the Midwest on Tuesday, snapping trees and power lines, delaying flights at one of the nation’s busiest airports and soaking commuters have slogged to work under umbrellas wrinkled.

The storm – quickly dubbed a “Chiclon” and “windpocalypse” – swept an area stretching from the Dakotas east of the Great Lakes. Warnings of severe thunderstorms blanketed most watches Midwest and tornadoes have been issued for Arkansas to Ohio. Flights were delayed at O’Hare International Airport, an important hub for American Airlines and United.

Sustained winds of 35 to 40 km / h and gusts up to 60 mph were expected throughout the afternoon, the National Weather Service said.

Meteorologist Amy Seeley described the storm as one of the worst in decades is based on a reading level of pressure at its center, which was similar to a Category 3 hurricane – although the effects of the storm are not. Wind gusts were as strong as a tropical storm of Category 3 hurricane with winds of 111-130 mph.

“It’s a very different type of event,” said Edward Fenelon, a meteorologist at the National Weather Service in Romeoville, Ill. “But it does give an indication of the magnitude of the winds. This is not something you see even every year. ”

The winds blew the roofs at a tractor plant in Mount Pleasant, Wisconsin, and a home in Peotone, Illinois

Uthemann Sheryl, 49, of South Milwaukee, was the first shift at Case New Holland plant in Mount Pleasant, when the storm blew over about 8:00 and began to raise the roof.

“It was just a normal working day and suddenly the noise comes and (co-worker) said:” Run! Run! Run! You do not have time to think, “she said. ‘I looked where the noise came and saw pieces of the roof sucked. I’ve never been more scared, never. ”

Commuters in the Chicago area face windy, the wind-driven rain as they waited for trains to take them downtown before dawn. Some huddled under overpasses being gusts stay out, rushing to the platform at the last minute. In the downtown loop, construction workers wearing raincoats and hats hanging from their hard, heavy metal street signs shaken against their positions and umbrellas provided relief so far as they could last.

“The wind is blowing almost horizontally. The rain hit me head on,” said Anthony Kwit, a worker 24 years of jewelry shop in Chicago. “My umbrella shot off … It was very dangerous. ”

He said the wind was so strong that his car “starts to deviate from the road.”

Another reader described a fear suburb before dawn at the station.

“It was raining really, really hard Walking down the street I was just really nervous. Even with the lights you could not see in front of you, “said Delphine Thompson, 53, responsible for telecommunications in Chicago.

The Weather Service said wind gusts exceeded 50 miles per hour slammed into the Chicago suburb of Lombard Tuesday morning.

Federal Aviation Administration spokesman Tony Molinaro said of the flights were delayed early Tuesday morning at O’Hare International Airport because the airport was able to use only two runways for arrivals and one for departures. By midmorning, the delays have decreased by 15 to 30 minutes, he said.

Indianapolis International Airport also reported flight delays.

The storm also picked up speed on Twitter, where people called “Chiclon” and “Windpocalypse.”

In St. Louis, before dawn winds were blamed for a partial building collapse that sent bricks, roof air conditioners and some rain on a sidewalk. Nobody was injured and the inspectors have inspected the building dating from 1920.

In Ballwin, a suburb of St. Louis, a woman was slightly injured when a tree fell on her house while she slept, she and her husband covered with dust and insulation. The family managed to leave the house and called emergency responders.

In Milwaukee, some restaurants inside, sidewalk furniture as the storm approached and owners scrambled to shut all that could be swept away by the storm.

Utilities in Indiana, Illinois and the St. Louis region has reported more than 80,000 homes and businesses were without power.

Meanwhile, thousands of North Dakota was waiting for its first significant snowfall of the season. The National Weather Service issued a blizzard warning, saying up to 10 inches of snow could fall in some areas early Wednesday.

The snow is expected in North Dakota and northern South Dakota. Forecasters said wind gusts over 50 mph in many areas would travel treacherous.

Fenelon of the National Weather Service said the wind was calm Tuesday night, but could resume Wednesday.

Eleven states are under a high wind warning: Illinois, Wisconsin, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska, Minnesota, Ohio and parts of Kentucky.

With a nod to the end of next week, Jodi WhiteJones in Chicago said she hoped the storm would not lead to Halloween-related disasters.

“Everyone in Chicago is used to the weather, but with this kind of wind I just hope nobody gets hurt by things falling buildings, flying pumpkins, debris,” said Dean College 41 – years, attending the University of Illinois at Chicago.

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