Severe thunderstorms cause damage around Mower County Tuesday evening

The severe thunderstorms that rumbled through southeastern Minnesota Tuesday night left their mark on Mower County.

The Mower County Sheriff’s Office reported that deputies were dispatched to a semi rollover on U.S.  Highway 218 near Lansing just after 7:00 p.m. Tuesday evening.  Sheriff Steve Sandvik reported that deputies arrived to find a tractor-trailer on its side in the ditch. The driver was uninjured, but told deputies he thought his semi had been lifted by the wind, or a possible tornado and dropped on its side in the ditch.  The Austin Fire Department also responded to the accident scene, and Sheriff Sandvik stated that no damage estimate was available at last word.  

Sheriff’s deputies also responded to a report of water over the road on Mower County Road 20 near the interchange with I-90. Deputies arrived around 7:50 p.m. and provided traffic control until the water receded.  Sandvik stated that there was no other damage reported or observed in the immediate vicinity.  

High winds then knocked a tree down across the road and partially on some power lines in the 29000 block of 525th Avenue. Sheriff Sandvik stated that Freeborn Mower Electric Cooperative responded to the scene and dealt with the tree, and just before 9:00 p.m. Tuesday evening, the Sheriff’s Office received a report of a power pole and transformer on fire in the 100 block of Pershing Avenue in Lyle. Deputies, Lyle Police and Fire, and the power company responded to the fire, which authorities believe may have been started by a lightning strike. Electricity was restored to Lyle residents after a short time.