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A historical event unfolded across the central United States as a strong storm system tracked across the central Plains and up across the Upper Mississippi Valley. Record warmth was observed across the state of Wisconsin ahead of this system, as temperatures soared into the mid to upper 60s. A few locations across southwest Wisconsin even saw temperatures warm into the lower 70s.

Strong wind gusts of 55 to 65 mph were observed as the weakening line of thunderstorms moved into southwest Wisconsin and large-scale gradient winds increased behind decaying line of thunderstorms. Pockets of tree damage and power outages occurred as a result of the strong winds.

The storm system was so powerful, it transported smoke from numerous large wildfires that ignited in western and central Kansas, all the way up into Wisconsin! We had many reports of seeing haze from the smoke and some were even able to smell a hint of smoke in the atmosphere.  

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Radar loop showing robust thunderstorms moving into western Wisconsin late on the evening of December 15th, weakening as they passed through southern Wisconsin into the early morning hours of December 16th. 
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