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hail

Large hail fell from Beulah to Jamestown on Tuesday. Pictured here is hail in Bismarck.

Strong thunderstorms tied to the recent hot and humid weather left a swath of damage from Beulah to Bismarck and across to Jamestown.

National Weather Service storm reports indicate damage to trees, crops, buildings and vehicles late Tuesday -- damage resulting from a typical midsummer storm in North Dakota.

"What we had yesterday was kind of summer across the Plains," weather service Meteorologist Adam Jones said.

Wind gusts up to 70 mph and egg-size hail were reported in Oliver County. Hail of varying sizes fell from there through the Bismarck-Mandan area, which saw winds of similar strength. Another storm system that developed south of the cities caused similar damage from Lincoln into Stutsman County to the east, bringing winds in excess of 60 mph that snapped trees and also downed power lines in the Sterling area.

"We had storms coming kind of every which way," Jones said. "Several places had a rough day."

That included farm fields, where some crops are considered a total loss, according to storm reports.

"Everyone's crops are in and healthy. You get a little bit of wind and some hail, that really wreaks havoc on those crops," Jones said. "A lot of farmers are displeased with some of the storms we've had as of late."

Renae Gress, agriculture and natural resources extension agent in Morton County, said midday Wednesday that she had not yet received calls about crop damage but that “driving south of Mandan you can see damage to corn and soybean fields, along with a damaged barn roof.”

Hot, humid weather is a factor in creating the recent strong storms, according to Jones. 

"If you've got a pot of water, the higher you turn the temperature on that pot of water, the more rapidly it boils," he said. "The same with the atmosphere. You get that moisture and crank up the heat, and you get some really big thunderstorms."

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State Farm insurance in the Dakotas, Iowa and Nebraska on Wednesday did not immediately have numbers on claims calls related to this week’s severe weather, but spokeswoman Kelly Pargett told the Tribune “we continue to monitor and respond to reports of damage” in southern North Dakota and surrounding areas.

The company issued some “post-storm tips,” including documenting damage with photos, saving receipts and immediately reporting claims.

Similar widespread bad storms aren't expected in the next couple of days, but there's a chance of storms again this weekend.

"At least a little bit of a break coming up," Jones said.

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Reach Blake Nicholson at 701-250-8266 or Blake.Nicholson@bismarcktribune.com

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