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Strong winds topple freight train, power lines downstate

Updated: April 29, 2014 1:41AM



Chicago could see more rain overnight after a drizzly day, but nothing like the severe thunderstorms that walloped central Illinois and blew a freight car off its rails Monday afternoon in downstate Peoria County.

Forecasters had predicted the worst storms arriving from west-central Illinois would form south and southwest of Interstate 80, behind a warm front bisecting the state, according to the National Weather Service.

In the Chicago area, the city and suburbs might see more rain overnight, but not any severe weather, meteorologist Eric Lenning said.

“If the current trends continue as they have been, the city would see rain showers, but most of the thunderstorms [would be] in the far, far southern suburbs and out toward Kankakee, Iroquois counties,” Lenning said of the overnight forecast.

Lows will drop to the upper 40s Monday night. Tuesday’s forecast calls for a high in the mid-60s, and more showers and thunderstorms are possible, the weather service said.

Downstate on Monday, straight-line winds near the community of Laura in Peoria County toppled 20 to 25 freight cars and knocked over half a mile of power lines, said Assistant Chief Robert Forney, of the Brimfield Community Fire Protection District.

No one was hurt in the train derailment, Forney said. The strong winds also toppled a semitrailer nearby, he said.

Residents near Dwight in Livingston County saw roughly 10 minutes of penny-sized hail, according to the weather service.

In Marseilles in La Salle County, storms blew in heavy rain and 30 mph wind gusts.



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