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National Weather Service to survey damage Saturday after Atwater hit hard by Friday storm

ATWATER – Meteorologists from the National Weather Service office in Chanhassen will be surveying storm damage Saturday in Atwater.

Strong thunderstorms roared through west central Minnesota late Friday afternoon, leaving a trail of downed branches and about an inch of rain.

But Atwater and areas east of the town toward Grove City took the brunt of it.

“It’s kind of a disaster,” Atwater Mayor Mark Olson said in a phone interview Friday evening.

Trees and power lines were down all over town, he said. “Nobody got hurt as far as I know,” he added.

Many trees and branches were down, including some big trees. A 150-year-old oak at his grandparents’ farm went down, he said.

“Trees are down on roofs,” he said. “I saw evergreens that were twisted.”

Those twisted evergreens will be of interest to the National Weather Service, said Bill Borghoff, a weather service meteorologist.

Much of the area was hit by straight-line winds, but the line of storms bowed out over Atwater, producing a concentrated area of dangerous winds and a possible tornado, Borghoff said.

Linda Vanderwerf

I cover education issues for the West Central Tribune and have worked for the paper since 1995. I have worked in journalism since 1981.

Follow me on Twitter: @lindavanderwerf

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