Residents of Oklahoma were seen going through damaged houses across the Midwest on Sunday after a violent storm unleashed tornadoes that killed five people and injured at least 29 in Oklahoma. They destroyed a hospital, several homes and other buildings.
According to a CBS News report, Oklahoma emergency officials said that five people died after a tornado hit at 12:18 a.m. Sunday in and around the northwest Oklahoma town of Woodward with strong winds damaging homes, toppling trees and destroying power lines about 140 miles northwest of Oklahoma City. Most of the damage was reported on the west side of the town of about 12,000 people and its outskirts, where rescue teams searched in the rubble for hours for survivors of the terrible storm.
Storms also were reported in Kansas, Iowa and Nebraska as a huge storm system made its way across the middle of the nation. Lightning, large hail and heavy showers accompanied the storm, which was so massive that it still posed a threat from Minnnesota, Wisconsin and Michigan to eastern Texas and Louisiana hundreds of miles to the south.
According to the National Weather Service, more than 100 tornadoes had been reported across the region. Although the storms were decreasing in strength and further tornadoes were quite unlikely, weather forecasters warned that severe thunderstorms were still a huge threat as far east as Michigan.
Five people lost their lives and 29 were injured when a huge tornado hit a mobile home park in Woodward, Okla., about 140 miles northwest of Oklahoma City. Streets were left dotted with destroyed vehicles, fallen power lines and damaged buildings.
The Storm Prediction Center in Norman, Okla., which specializes in tornado forecasting, had issued a warning of a "high-end, life-threatening event" nearly 48 hours before the bad weather hit. It happened just for the second time in U.S. history that the center gave a high-risk warning of bad weather more than 24 hours in advance. The first was in April 2006, when about 100 tornadoes ripped across the southeast U.S., killing a dozen people and destroying more than a thousand homes in Tennessee.
According to CBS News, the center's spokesman, Chris Vaccaro, said, “The weather service had received at least 97 reports of tornadoes by dawn of Sunday and survey teams would be heading out to investigate and determine the number of actual tornadoes, their highest winds, and the width and length of their destructive paths. Several large funnel clouds and tornadoes were photographed and videographed during the outbreak.”