Funnel cloud sighted over Effingham; no damages reported

The funnel cloud was disolving when this photo was taken at the intersection of Charlotte and Rickelman in Effingham Sunday afternoon.

EFFINGHAM — Around 2:30 p.m. Sunday, outdoor warning sirens sounded after weather spotters reported seeing at least one funnel cloud in the northeast part of Effingham.

National Weather Service Meteorologist Chris Geelhart said the funnel cloud formed under a rain shower and had a little rotation due to the wind shift.

“It briefly touched down, but was mostly a landspout,” said Geelhart.

According to the National Severe Storms Laboratory, a landspout is a tornado with a narrow, rope-like condensation funnel that forms while the thunderstorm cloud is still growing and there is no rotating updraft — the spinning motion originates near the ground.

He estimated the touchdown was somewhere near the Effingham and Cumberland county line, or about five miles north of Teutopolis.

Geelhart said there was no damage reported.

The Effingham City Emergency Management Association posted on its Facebook page that the outdoor sirens were sounded after a funnel cloud was spotted near the city. Along with that was a small thunderstorm.

However, it was noted that the outdoor siren near Silver Lake Subdivision did not activate during the warning on Sunday, and authorities are working to get that resolved quickly.

“The outdoor sirens are designed to be heard while participating in outdoor activities, so you may not always hear them indoors,” said Kim Tegeler, city emergency management association coordinator.

The outdoor warning sirens are tested monthly and they were all working properly during the monthly test in August, she added.

Dawn Schabbing can be reached at or 217-347-7151, ext 138.


Dawn Schabbing is a senior reporter at the Effingham Daily News, covering Effingham City Hall, Unit 40, and special projects. A graduate of Lake Land College and Eastern Illinois University with degrees in journalism, she lives in Neoga.

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