National Weather Service says Iowa derecho's winds hit 140 mph PHOTOS

Westdale Apartment Complex photos by Wendy Wilde iHeartMedia

QUAD CITIES, Iowa -- The National Weather Service is getting a clearer picture of the power of last week's derecho.

"Our top estimated winds, so far, are around 140 miles an hour. That's based on damage to an apartment complex in Cedar Rapids" says Quad Cities NWS Meteorologist Rich Kinney. The photo above shows the worst-damaged of the apartment buildings in Southwest Cedar Rapids.

Kinney says the storm actually got stronger as it moved easterly across the state.

"As it got into Tama and Poweshiek counties it started to accelerate. It picked up steam as it rolled through Benton County, then continues right through the Cedar Rapids area" He says.

The National Weather Service says the storm's 80 miles an hour winds in the Des Moines Metro area, became 105 mile an hour winds in Marshall and Tama counties, topping out at 140 miles an hour in Cedar Rapids.

Kinney says the storm's power is especially evident in rural parts of Iowa.

"It's the equivalent of 50, maybe 100 tornadoes spread out through the path because every farmstead is heavily impacted. I've never seen anything like this since I've been with the Weather Service" he says.

Kinney says the storm's winds were strong enough to knock down radio transmitter towers in Cedar Rapids and Clinton.

Storm photos of apartment complex damage by Wendy Wilde iHeartMedia.

WMT fallen tower photo by Raleigh Rubenkind iHeartMedia.

Westdale Apartment Complex photos by Wendy Wilde iHeartMedia
Westdale Apartment Complex photos by Wendy Wilde iHeartMedia
Photo of WMT Tower downed by Derecho storm by Raleigh Rubenking  iHeartMedia

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