Skip to main content

Major damage after tornado strikes western Wisconsin towns of Elk Mound, Wheaton

Daylight has revealed some of the catastrophic damage in Wheaton.
Wheaton tornado damage

Homes completely demolished in Wheaton. 

A gorgeous Tuesday in Minnesota and Wisconsin quickly turned ominous as severe thunderstorms exploded around the dinner hour, with rotating storms producing tornadoes that are suspected of causing significant damage in a pair of western Wisconsin towns. 

Elk Mound and Wheaton, located just west/northwest of Eau Claire, were hit hard by the after-dark storms. Video taken by residents in those areas shows the silhouettes of the tornado as it was illuminated by frequent lightning. 

A confirmed tornado struck the Elk Mound area just before 8 p.m., according to the National Weather Service. Wheaton, located just northeast of Elk Mound, was the next to be hit hard. It's unclear if it was the same tornado to hit both towns. 

Daylight has since revealed the destruction, with Joshua Gawrysiak posting video to Facebook that shows a row of houses completely flattened along a highway in Wheaton. 

The Chippewa County Sheriff's Office has asked volunteers to stay out of the Wheaton area. 

“Emergency crews are working to keep the public safe. Power lines may be down & debris can cause injuries that are better avoided in day,” the sheriff's office said.

A Facebook page dedicated to reporting police scanner reports out of Chippewa County has reported that semis and other vehicles were flipped on Hwy. 29, along with possible gas leaks, trailer homes damaged and even rescue crews trying to locate people calling for help. 

Fortunately, there haven't been any reports of serious injuries or death. 

This is a developing story. 

Next Up

police lights

Man arrested after abduction attempt in Bemidji

The incident occurred in Cameron Park on June 25.

betty danger's

Betty Danger's in NE Minneapolis for sale for $4.2 million

The asking price includes the restaurant's ferris wheel, as well as a nearby single-family home.


Minnesota health officials warn monkeypox cases could grow rapidly

The state has so far confirmed only six cases of monkeypox virus.


Bodies of woman, three young children recovered from Vadnais Lake

Authorities say the bodies recovered were those of two boys, one girl and their mother.

Pixabay laptop keyboard phone dark

Charges: Duluth man had hundreds of child porn images, videos

The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children found nearly 330 images on the man's electronic devices.

hennepin county sheriff water patrol lake minnetonka

Scuba diver found dead in Lake Minnetonka identified as 20-year-old

The Hennepin County Medical Examiner's Office said 20-year-old Brady Alan Aune, from Elko New Market, died of freshwater drowning on June 3.

Screen Shot 2022-06-30 at 11.18.35 AM

Felony charges filed after authorities search 'Peacebunny Cottage'

The president of the rabbit rescue non-profit faces multiple animal cruelty charges after over 40 rabbits were found dead inside the organization's barn.

monkeypox virus

Minnesota up to 6 confirmed cases of monkeypox virus

Most people recover at home within 2-4 weeks.

thc edibles

Did Minnesota just accidentally legalize THC?

A Republican lawmaker who voted to approve the new law in May is already talking about rolling it back.

Screen Shot 2022-06-30 at 3.19.42 PM

Gasoline may be cause of sewer explosion on U of M campus

An all-clear was given around 9 p.m. Thursday, with residents in the area allowed to return to their homes.


Overwhelming demand for THC products on first day of new law in MN

One shop owner said his Chaska store broke the online sales record before they opened Friday morning.


Wisconsin tornado damage

Drone video of EF-3 tornado's damage path in Wheaton

The twister had winds in excess of 150 mph.

Hartland storm damage

Storm damage reports in MN: Small town rocked by possible tornado

Numerous towns in southeastern Minnesota were slammed by damaging storms.

Dalton tornado damage

Extreme damage from deadly tornado in west-central Minnesota

One person was killed during the Wednesday tornado.

Severe storms possible in eastern MN, tornado chances in WI

Storms are expected to develop in eastern Minnesota and move into Wisconsin.

Screen Shot 2019-06-07 at 9.08.36 AM

Tornado touched down in Rochester, damage survey confirms

With winds up to 107 mph, it was a strong EF-1 tornado.

Screen Shot 2019-09-03 at 12.59.54 PM

NWS confirms tornado hit near Watertown, Minnetrista

The tornado touched down just east of Watertown.


Violent tornado rocks Forada as storm leaves long damage path in MN

The NWS will send teams to survey damage in Douglas, Todd, Pope, Swift, Stevens, McLeod and Carver counties.

Screen Shot 2018-09-21 at 6.49.28 AM

Labor Day storms leave behind damage reports across Minnesota

A tornado was confirmed on radar between St. Bonifacius and Maple Plain.