The National Weather Service has confirmed that the wide range of damage across Wentzville at midnight last night was caused by a tornado. The tornado was tentatively identified as an EF1, with peak wind speed of 88 m.p.h.
Some of the worst damage was at the Mobile Home Manor, on West Main Street west of the Wentzville Community Club. One mobile home was rolled completed over, trapping residents inside. Two people sustained injuries.
Many other mobile homes were damaged, with roofs torn off, decks and porches destroyed, and siding ripped away. Emergency crews were on site almost immediately
Just next door, the Wentzville Community Club lost one large tree, and many others were damaged.
An $88,000 fifth-wheel camper on display at Bill Thomas Camper Sales on Veterans Memorial Parkway was knocked off a concrete pad. The camper rolled and ended up at the edge of the driveway, smashed and broken.
Another scene of destruction was at Wentzville Millwork (Chic Lumber) at the corner of West Main and Church Street. Part of a large storage building collapsed, and the metal roof ended up on its edge against against a utility pole. Some of the debris flew across the alley and ended up hitting the back of the Wentzville Chamber of Commerce offices, pushing the outside wall into a kitchen area. Many buildings in the area also sustained damaged and a window was broken.
Mayor Nick Guccione posted this update of the damage on his Facebook page last night, before a tornado had been confirmed.
At approximately 1201 hours this date straightline winds presented from Hepperman Rd and travelled east to the area of Continental Dr. and East Pierce. Damage occurred at the following areas:
Bill Thomas Camper Sales: 5th Wheel turned Over
Swantnerville Rd: Several Buildings suffered severs Structural Damage
Super 8 Motel: Tractor Trailer overturned
Mobile Manor: Two occupied mobile homes overturned; each was occupied; two people suffered minor injuries and were transported to the hospital; a significant gas leak was discovered and the other residents in that neighborhood were evacuated
Wentzville Millworks; Significant Structural Damage
In the area of Continental Dr. and East Pitman: several buildings had roof damage
Wentzville Heights Subdivision: Tree Damage and a gas leak
Charlie’s Farm and Home: Roof Damage
West Pierce and Choctaw Dr: Minor damage to commercial buildings
Mark Fuchs of the National Weather Service told 70 West Sentinel that sirens were not sounded in St. Charles County because a tornado warning was never issued. To issue a warning, rotation would have to be seen on radar or reported by trained spotters.
“This storm had a lot of spurious circulations, most of which were not tornadic,” Fuchs said. “This [tornado] was on the ground for only a few minutes. It was a hit-and-run, basically.”