Hurricane-force winds ripped through the Great Plains and the Midwest on Wednesday and nearly 20 tornado reports were confirmed across Minnesota, Iowa and Nebraska. (Watch video above)

There were also at least 55 reports of wind gusts over 75 mph, the most ever recorded on a single day, according to the National Weather Service’s Storm Prediction Center. (Data has only been collected since 2004). In Lamar, Colorado the wind reached 107 mph.

According to Accuweather, “softball-sized hail was reportedly measured near Emporia, Kansas, one of the most impressive storm reports of the day. Hailstones this large can reach speeds of a major league fastball — 100 mph — causing significant damage to property and cause major injury.”

Temperatures exceeded December highs in multiple states. In parts of Iowa, Nebraska and Kansas the temperature was 40 degrees higher than normal.

“As was the case with the deadly tornado outbreak last weekend, the record heat and high humidity, flowing north from an unusually warm Gulf of Mexico, helped fuel the severe storms,” explains Axios.

“These storms are happening in a place where tornadoes and severe weather are unprecedented in mid-December,” AccuWeather Chief Meteorologist Jonathan Porter said.

100 million people from New Mexico to Wisconsin were impacted by the extreme weather. 520,000 customers across 8 states had no power as of Thursday morning.

“I think we also need to stop asking the question of whether or not this event was caused by climate change. All events nowadays are augmented by climate change,” Victor Gensini, a meteorology professor at Northern Illinois University, told The Guardian. “We need to be asking, ‘To what extent did climate change play a role and how likely was this event to occur in the absence of climate change?’”

Watch the storms and high winds roll into the Denver area: