National Weather Service confirms three EF2 tornadoes in Sioux Falls during Tuesday night’s storms

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Update: (2:15 p.m.)

SIOUX FALLS, SD (KTIV) – The National Weather Service (NWS) in Sioux Falls has determined three separate tornadoes occurred within the city during Tuesday night’s storms.

According to the NWS, all three tornadoes were rated EF-2 with estimated wind speeds ranging from 125-130 mph.

The NWS preliminary damage survey says the first tornado touchdown on 41st Street at about 11:28 p.m. and lifted a minute later at 11:29 p.m.

The second tornado impacted the Avera Health Complex in Sioux Falls with eight injuries attributed to this tornado.

The third tornado was confirmed in southern Sioux Falls. The NWS says significant straight line wind damage was reported downstream of this tornado.

The last tornado to be confirmed in the city of Sioux Falls was an F-0 back on June 12, 2001.

Update: (11:34 a.m.)

SIOUX FALLS, SD (KTIV) – Thousands of people are still without power in Sioux Falls on Wednesday after a tornado caused significant damage to the city late Tuesday night.

City officials say a little under 8,000 people are still without power after last night’s storm.

David Flicek, president and CEO of Avera McKennan Hospital & University Health Center, says seven people sustained minor injuries due to the storms.

Todd Heitkamp, with the National Weather Service says an EF2 tornado with up to 120 mph winds caused damage on 41st Street in Sioux Falls.

Heitkamp says the last time Sioux Falls saw a significant tornado was in 1996.

Mayor Paul TenHaken signed a disaster declaration Wednesday morning. This allows Sioux Falls to hire more crews to clean up the damage.

Mark Cotter, Director of Public Works, says there are currently 20 crews out in the city.

TenHaken says a human error was the reason not all of the warning sirens went off during the morning storms. He says the system is not broken.

People who want to volunteer to help should call the 211 Helpline Center or go to the City of Sioux Falls’ website for more information.

Previous (8:00 a.m.):

SIOUX FALLS, SD (KTIV) – Sioux Falls, South Dakota officials held a news conference Wednesday morning after a possible tornado and storms caused significant damage to the town.

Sioux Falls Mayor Paul TenHaken said an emergency operations center has been set up to assess the damage throughout the city.

TenHaken said a shelter has been opened out at the fairgrounds for anyone impacted by the storm.

TenHaken said they are working on filing an emergency declaration for the city of Sioux Falls but they haven’t heard of any casualties or serious injuries from the storm.

Todd Heitkamp with the Sioux Falls National Weather Service said they haven’t confirmed yet if a tornado caused the damage. He said that assessment will happen this morning once it’s light out.

Heitkamp says there is no way just one tornado caused significant damage. He doesn’t know if the storm was from multiple tornados or straight-line winds.

Several traffic signals are out this morning as well. So if you are traveling throughout Sioux Falls, be aware of that. Officials said to treat the intersection as a four-way stop.

TenHaken said there was a breach of protocol and not all the tornado sirens were sounded.

TenHaken said they will be looking into the breach in the next few hours and days.

TenHaken said its too early to say what the breach was.

Heitkamp reminds people those sirens are outdoor sirens not tornado sirens. They aren’t meant to warn people indoors. He said that’s why it’s important to have another source like a weather radio to get alerts.

The city will hold another briefing at 10:30 this morning and KTIV will continue to update this story.


Around 11:45 p.m. on Tuesday, the National Weather Service tweeted a tornado was confirmed on the south side of Sioux Falls, South Dakota with damage being reported.

The Sioux Falls Police issued a “No Travel Advisory” in Sioux Falls because of all the downed power lines and trees. They are asking people to stay off the roads until routes are safe to travel and clear of debris.


The Mayor of Sioux Falls Paul TenHaken says that they have mobilized the emergency operation center.

The National Weather Service in Sioux Falls says they will be conducting a survey Wednesday to access the damage.

KTIV will continue to update this story. 

KTIV Staff

KTIV Staff

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