On Thursday, it seemed that forecasters’ dire scenario played out with the storm’s direct hit of the state, home to 3.1 million Americans. When it descended from the skies, the tornado took a course that bisected the state from the Southeast to the Northwest. “A 50- to 60-mile-wide tornado raged across Iowa like a buzz saw,” Jeff Weber, a meteorologist with the National Center for Atmospheric Research, says. “This means the path of destruction was literally 1000 times wider than in a typical tornado.”
Communications to and from Iowa are strained, but the situation on the ground sounds very grim. There is no electricity anywhere in the state — and it could remain that way for months. Whole communities are likely destroyed. It’s probable the state also saw near-record levels of rain and flooding.
“We’re talking here about major devastation,” Bob Feller, a spokesperson for the Iowa governor’s office, told PBS NewsHour Wednesday. “And when we say major devastation, that means that in terms of infrastructure, we have full communities that 80 or 90 percent of the homes are a complete disaster. They are totally lost.”
The storm is a catastrophe that will scar Iowa for months and years.
Slightly re-written from the original source.