'Never seen nothing like it': Tornadoes leave behind damage in Kankakee County

As high winds swept through the area Tuesday afternoon, the National Weather Service (NWS) confirmed two tornadoes touched down in Kankakee County.

The first was reported near Herscher just before 2 p.m., and soon after, a second tornado hit Manteno.

A wastewater treatment facility took the brunt of the damage in Manteno, sending debris through neighboring cornfields and just barely avoiding a nearby mobile home park.

"I’ve never seen nothing like it," said Rhenn Guynn-Jackson. "Debris everywhere, it’s like a mile down the road."

In the 6000 block of E 9000N Road – about four miles east of Manteno’s Main Street – a single-story pump station was no match for Mother Nature.

When a funnel cloud reached the ground at 2:20 p.m. on Tuesday, the building was destroyed.

Fencing, siding, and equipment – including a table and ladder – were strewn across the property. Some of the debris even ended up in nearby cornfields.

"She had just left and she’s like, ‘mom,’ she calls me and she’s like, ‘mom, the building is in the field,’ and I’m like, ‘what!?’" said Guynn-Jackson.


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Parts of the Chicagoland area experienced a tumultuous Tuesday afternoon with reports of two tornadoes touching down in the far south suburbs.

Guynn-Jackson stopped to see the tornado damage for herself. Her daughter works at the wastewater treatment plant and left the facility just 15 minutes prior to the impact.

"God was on her side for sure because if she was in that plant, you never know," said Guynn-Jackson.

Also narrowly escaping the twister's touchdown by a few hundred yards is the mobile home park that the facility services.

"Sometimes it works in mysterious ways, and today it worked," said Guynn-Jackson.

While those customers lost power for a brief time due to four downed poles, it was restored quickly by ComEd.

ComEd crews also responded to the scene to de-energize the downed wires.

Now, the cleanup begins.

No injuries were reported in either tornado that touched down in Kankakee County.