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Report confirms 5 tornadoes hit area

Tuesday’s early-morning storms that swept through northeast Indiana and left two people dead included five confirmed tornadoes, the National Weather Service said Thursday.

The weather service’s regional office in Syracuse issued a report Thursday on the storms that said tornadoes touched down in Kosciusko, LaGrange, Noble, Wabash and Whitley counties.

The weather service said an EF-1 tornado touched down in the far-northern Kosciusko County town of Gravelton at the Elkhart County line. The tornado, which had a maximum wind speed of 95 mph, was on the ground for two minutes and traveled a little more than a half mile, damaging a barn and knocking down or snapping about 20 trees, one into a home.

An EF-0 tornado, with top winds of 80 mph, hit near Milford in Kosciusko County and destroyed a large metal barn, the weather service said.

Another EF-1 tornado touched down first in northwest Wabash County, then was on the ground about seven minutes as it entered southern Kosciusko.

That 150-yard-wide tornado had winds of 100 mph, the weather service said, and destroyed structures and uprooted numerous trees.

In Whitley County, an EF-1 tornado with top winds of 100 mph briefly touched down near South Whitley.

The tornado in LaGrange County, the weather service said, was an EF-1 (top speed 95 mph) that touched down just on U.S. 20 and briefly entered the western side of the city of LaGrange.

The tornadoes and straight-line winds associated with the line of storms also knocked out power to about 150,000 northern Indiana residents, many of whom might not have their lights turned back on until Saturday.

More than 20,000 homes and businesses remained without power late Thursday, mostly in the South Bend area. Northern Indiana is mainly served by Northern Indiana Public Service Co. and Indiana-Michigan Power.