A line of severe storms swept through Indiana and Michigan Saturday into early Sunday, October 15, 2017, dumping record rain, flooding streets and pushing temperatures below normal for this time of the year. The greatest rainfall totals were in La Porte and St. Joseph counties in Indiana and Berrien and Cass counties in Michigan.
"We had a cold front that stalled out just to the west of the region that bent just slightly, so it pushed all the rain toward La Porte County, northern St. Joseph County, Berrien County and Cass County," said Chris Roller, a NWS meteorologist in the northern Indiana office. "Storms that were riding along that front just kept coming through the area, one after the other, like cars in a train," Roller said.
La Porte recorded 104.9 mm (4.13 inches) of rain on October 14, breaking the previous record of 69.3 (2.74 inches) for that date set in 1954. On the same day, Hesston recorded 125.9 mm (4.96 inches) of rain while South Bend measured 96.7 mm (3.81 inches), the highest one-day total ever to fall in October for that location. The previous record in South Bend was 88.1 mm (3.47 inches) set in 1988.
The front finally pushed through the area early Sunday morning, dropping temperatures from the mid-60s (18 °C) about 05:00 EDT into the mid-50s by (13 °C) mid-afternoon. Wind gusts ranged from 51 km/h (32 mph) east of Trail Creek to 69 km/h (43 mph) measured in Benton Harbor, The Michigan City News-Dispatch reports.
According to La Porte County Sheriff, two car accidents happened within several minutes Saturday afternoon, leaving three people in critical conditions.
Emergency units in n scene of critical injury crash on US 35 near 400 N. Medical helicopter en route. Avoid area! pic.twitter.com/zJSHhs1qFR— LaPorte Co. Sheriff (@XLSarge) October 14, 2017
Extrication completed on both drivers. Helicopter disregarded due to weather. US 35 closed between La Porte & US 20. Please avoid area! pic.twitter.com/4zQW6ZjSX6— LaPorte Co. Sheriff (@XLSarge) October 14, 2017
Emergency units on scene of single vehicle crash Range Road at 700 N. One patient extricated by Kankakee FD. Non-life threatening injuries. pic.twitter.com/HtQhTXbOka— LaPorte Co. Sheriff (@XLSarge) October 14, 2017
Two medical helicopter services were called to the accident scenes but were grounded because of the weather.
Featured image credit: La Porte County Sheriff's Department