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‘Radar confirmed tornado’ reported south of Odessa, weather service says

After tornado warnings were sent out across the Kansas City metro due to severe storms Friday night, the National Weather Service says it plans to send a crew to assess the damage.

One area it plans to focus on is in Lafayette County, Missouri, south of Odessa.

At 8:32 p.m. the National Weather Service in Pleasant Hill, Missouri, tweeted, “Tornado circulations are east of the #KC metro now. Radar confirmed tornado south of Odessa, heading east northeast at 40 mph.”

Then, at 8:34 p.m., the weather service issued a warning for southern Lafayette and northeastern Johnson counties, adding that “a tornado producing storm” was located near Odessa, moving east at 50 mph. The warning has since expired.

“So far, we’ve seen a couple of photos and also had a signature on our radar of debris from a tornado that was all in the same location that was south of Odessa,” said National Weather Service meteorologist Jenni Pittman. “Other than that, we haven’t had any confirmed reports of tornadoes. We’ve heard of wind damage, so we will have to look at that tomorrow and see if that’s associated with straight line wind or with a tornado.”

Other parts of the metro were issued warnings throughout the night.

At 8:12 p.m., the weather service put out a warning for parts of Cass, Lafayette, Jackson and Johnson counties in Missouri after the weather service said a severe thunderstorm “capable of producing a tornado” was observed over Lake Lotawana, moving northeast at 40 mph.

Earlier, parts of Jackson and Cass counties were placed under warnings after the National Weather Service said its radar indicated severe storms “capable of producing” a tornado and straight line wind damage were observed over Grandview and Raymore around 7:50 p.m. The storm was moving east at 35 to 40 mph, the weather service said.

Then, at 7:56 p.m., it said “a severe squall line capable of producing both tornadoes and extensive straight line wind damage” was observed near Lee’s Summit, moving northeast at 25 mph.

The warnings issued for parts of southern Jackson and northern Cass counties have since expired or have been canceled.

As of 9 p.m., the weather service said on Twitter it canceled a tornado watch that was issued for the Kansas City area.

Kaitlyn Schwers covers breaking news and crime at night for The Kansas City Star. Originally from Willard, Mo., she spent nearly three years reporting in Arkansas and Illinois before returning to Missouri and joining The Star in 2017.