Storm causes tree and property damage

Opheim Seed & Chemical, located two miles east of Thor, suffered extensive damage from high winds in a severe thunderstorm that moved through the area early last Sunday morning on July 17. Two bins and two large sheds were demolished, along with half of another shed, according to Jason Opheim, business owner. Independent photo. See this photo and more at

Humboldt County was wracked by strong shear winds early Sunday morning, July 17, causing a large-scale amount of property damage at various locales.
One of the hardest hit areas was the city of Renwick, which had structural damage to some businesses and one home, many uprooted and broken trees, and a power outage that extended 22 hours.
Damage was also reported east of Livermore, north of Hardy and south of LuVerne, between Renwick and LuVerne in Vernon Township.
The Humboldt County Board of Supervisors declared the city of Renwick in a state of emergency due to straight line winds that occurred around 3 a.m. on Sunday.
A severe thunderstorm watch was issued for Humboldt County with the possibility of large hail and damaging winds.
“There were shear winds of 60-80 miles per hour and there may have been winds in excess of 90 miles per hour,” Humboldt County Emergency Management Coordinator Melody Larson said. A representative from the National Weather Service was at the scene on Sunday.
There were numerous trees and power lines down and most streets were impassable early in the day on Sunday.
Gov. Terry Branstad issued a disaster proclamation for Humboldt, Wright and Benton counties. The proclamation allows state resources to be used to recover from the effects of the severe storms. Humboldt County was not cleared for the Individual Assistance Program, which provides grants of up to $5,000 for households with incomes up to 200 percent of the current federal poverty level. That translates to a maximum income of $40,320 or less for a family of three.
For more news and photos of the storm damage, see this week's Humboldt Independent. The paper is available at newsstands, or better yet have the print or digital editions delivered to your door or computer by clicking on the Subscribe line at the top of this page.

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