By LESLIE EIKLEBERRY
A series of storms rolled through the area late Tuesday afternoon into evening, bringing with them heavy rains, flooding, gusty winds, power outages, and even a funnel cloud.
Torrential downpours dumped inches of rain in some locations of Ellsworth County, prompting the National Weather Service to issue a flood warning for the county through early this morning. KINA AM weather analyst Randy Picking reported that two to three inches of rain fell in parts of the county.
As if that wasn't enough, the weather service also issued a brief tornado warning for Ellsworth County after storm spotters reported a funnel cloud southwest of Ellsworth.
As the storms moved into Saline County, penny to quarter-sized hail was reported. As of 7 a.m. Wednesday, 0.95 of an inch of rain was reported at the Salina Regional Airport, while in southeast Salina, near the Eagle Radio studios 1.80 inches of rain was reported.
Wind gusts at the Salina Regional Airport reached 47 miles per hour during the height of the storms. Wind gusts appeared to strengthen as the storms rolled across the city, knocking down tree limbs and ripping off shingles. Picking said winds of at least 60 miles per hour that were reported a mile southeast of Bennington took down a large 45-foot-tall tree. Additionally, winds intensified in northeast Saline County to 60-70 mph and damaged trees and knocked out power as the storms moved into Dickinson County, Picking noted.
READ: Severe thunderstorms rumble through Geary County
The storms knocked out power to nearly 7,000 customers from Salina to Junction City, Picking said. The Evergy outage map indicated that 6,200 customers were without power, while the DS&O Electric Cooperative map indicated 660 customers without power. As of 10:57 a.m. Wednesday, power had been restored to nearly all Evergy customers and power had been restored to all DS&O customers, according to information on the outage maps.