Isolated Storms Leave Damage Behind In El Dorado

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Monday, July 25, 2011

Owners of a storage facility in El Dorado say the storm passed through the city about 4:30 p.m. Sunday. It didn't last long, but it left plenty of damage in its wake.

"This is almost the worst of our customer's damage is this laid over on its side all the way to the ground...this Sandpiper here,"

High winds put the Sandpiper camper on its side doing significant damage to the contents inside, Diane Flamm, owner of Bluestem Storage said. Flamm said 237 boats, recreational vehicles, and personal water craft are stored at the facility. The storm, she said, damaged about 36 of them in some way including blowing several completely off their blocks.

"Luckily it went over," Flamm said. Metal buildings used to store some customer's belongings inside are no match for the wind. "Most of it is out in the field," she added. Corrugated metal is ripped apart, some of it scattered across a field next to Bluestem Storage. "See those pieces way out there? They are so far away from the shed. They've gone so far," Flamm said.

The first thing many Kansans think of when damage like this occurs often is that it was a tornado. But emergency management viewed the damage, and believe it was caused by a micro-burst. Sudden high winds in micro-bursts can cause a lot of damage. When things start being torn apart by the wind, they become projectiles doing damage where they land.

Customers like Gary and Cindy Titus examined damage to their boat.
"We've just got a bent top up there, and it tore up the cover on top, Gary Titus said. "Other than that, it's pretty good. It's laying on another boat I guess." Their boat has minor damage and could be back on the water soon. "Not until they have an awning on it. It's too hot," Cindy Titus laughed.

The El Dorado State park and reservoir are just a few miles away. The manager said the park experienced only minor damage with a few tree limbs and branches down. That just shows how isolated some Kansas storms can be.

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