WEST MICHIGAN – Tuesday’s storm brought extensive damage to several communities in West Michigan. The National Weather Service has been working hard over the last few days, surveying the damage to figure out if tornadoes occurred or if the damage was more reminiscent of straight line winds. While most of the damage was indeed caused strictly by wind, two tornadoes did touch down in Baldwin & Idlewild (Lake County).
The first tornado struck Baldwin at 7:27 PM EDT and was on the ground only for a few minutes before lifting. It brought winds of 65-85 mph, which on the Enhanced Fujita Scale is EF-0. A second tornado then touched down just a few miles away in Idlewild. This one was also on the ground only for a few minutes, but was stronger than the first. The Idlewild tornado packed winds of 100 mph, giving it an EF-1 rating.
The multiple tornadoes on August 28th across the state were actually the first seen in 2018. All-in-all, six tornadoes formed in Michigan, making it one of the more active tornado days in recent years. Michigan typically sees 16 tornadoes each year, so we are still well below average.