The large silos on Mark Masters' farm were built to hold 80,000 bushels of corn and withstand strong wind events. When a storm cut a path through his farm on Sunday night those silos were no match for the winds. Masters’ farm is located 7 miles west of Dodgeville.
A tornado warning sent Masters and his family to the basement of their home some 300 feet away.
“There wasn’t a roar. It was just a 15 to 30 second period of wind and it was all over,” Masters said.
When the storm passed and Masters inspected the damage, he found the storm had torn the roof off of two of the large silos. With the roofs gone the winds buckled the walls of the silos and damaged the conveyor system. Masters believes the storm did several hundred thousand dollars in damage.
The amount of damage the storm did to the silos while sparing his home and family is not lost on him.
“Oh yeah, real much. It is a very fine line between damage and non-damage and sometimes life and death. The neighbor a quarter mile to the north of us, no damage and a quarter mile to the south of us, no damage,” Masters said.
After slamming into the silos on Masters’ farm the storm cut a path through a field to the northeast and snapped 10 power poles along Highway 18. Crews worked throughout Monday to replace the poles and restore power.
While an investigation team from the National Weather Service works to determine whether the damage was done by a tornado or straight-line winds, Masters said he is simply dealing with the realities of damage that was done.
“It is irrelevant, damage is damage. I’d be curious to know but does it make a difference? No,” Masters said.