Intense videos and photos capture tornado outbreak across Illinois

Central Illinois endured several tornadoes on Saturday, resulting in fascinating footage of the funnels spinning through the state. 

According to ABC News, a total of 22 tornadoes were reported to the National Weather Service, appearing across counties including Christian, Mason, Fulton, Cass, and Macoupin among others.

The storms reportedly caused injury to at least 20 people and significant structural damage. No reports of fatalities have been recorded in Illinois, although one person has been killed in neighbouring Missouri as a result of the storms.

The National Weather Service reportedly deployed teams on Sunday to assess the damage and measure the strength of the twisters.

Outgoing Gov. Bruce Rauner activated Illinois' State of Emergency Operations Center on Saturday.

"We activated the State Emergency Operations Center so that we could closely monitor the situation, keep in contact with local officials and quickly mobilize any state assets that may be needed," Rauner said in a statement to AP.

"If state assistance is need, we are well-positioned to provide it quickly and efficiently."

Sitting about 25 miles southeast of the state capital of Springfield, the Christian County town of Taylorville was among the hardest hit areas, with major damage to at least 100 buildings reported. The town received a 41-minute advance warning from the National Weather Service.

"It was one of those storms that just blew up," Christian County sheriff Bruce Kettelkamp told reporters on Saturday. 

"It just kind of came out of nowhere."

Residents across Illinois captured footage and photos of the tornado, with images posted to Twitter over the weekend.

Among the destruction, one photo captured a group of Illinois residents clearly used to this type of extreme weather. 

According to CNN meteorologist Allison Chinchar, Illinois has an average of 47 tornadoes per year, not including December, which Chinchar explained does not have its own average. 

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