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Storms Left Significant Wind Damage in Northern Illinois

CHICAGO (AP) - Thunderstorms that punched through northern Illinois overnight caused significant wind damage, mainly in rural areas west and south of Chicago.

The National Weather Service says intense winds estimated to have reached 70-80 mph in some areas snapped large trees at their trunks or uprooted them entirely. Barns were destroyed in northern Kankakee County.

The storms that began Wednesday afternoon produced hail and heavy rain that caused some flash flooding. There were also reports of possible tornadoes from police and trained storm observers, including in the village of Paw Paw in Lee County and to the north in the Rockford area. Nearly 11,000 customers were still without power Thursday.

Weather Service meteorologist Richard Castro says Chicago was largely spared because the intense line of thunderstorms formed to the south and east.

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