NW Indiana Tornado the First Ever Recorded in Chicago Area During Month of December

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Officials with the National Weather Service say that a tornado touched down in northwest Indiana on Friday night, making it the first recorded tornado to ever hit the Chicago metropolitan area during the month of December.

According to a public information statement sent by NWS on Saturday night, the tornado touched down in Cedar Lake, located 45 miles to the southeast of Chicago and just across the Illinois-Indiana border. It stayed on the ground for approximately five minutes before lifting back into the clouds in northern Crown Point.

NWS says that the tornado was the first one recorded in the month of December in the Chicago metro area since the service began keeping consistent records in 1950.

The tornado was the first to touch down in the NWS Chicago warning area since 1973, when a tornado touched down in Iroquois County on Dec. 4.

The NWS says that the tornado hit estimated peak wind speeds of between 75 and 85 miles per hour, making it an EF-0 tornado.

The twister was on the ground for approximately 4.8 miles, and had a maximum width of 100 yards, according to officials.

The tornado was on the ground for approximately five minutes, touching down between 10:05 p.m. and 10:10 p.m., according to the initial damage assessment.

Trees were damaged by the twister, along with minor roof damage. No injuries or fatalities were reported.

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