Late Saturday evening tornadoes ripped through East Texas leaving six confirmed dead and dozens upon dozens of others injured. Authorities have noted that the death toll could rise exponentially. 50 miles away from Dallas, Canton was hit pretty hard with overturned vehicles, tree wreckage, and mangled wires all over the road.
Captain Brian Horton of the Canton Fire Department told reporters that those who didn’t need to be in the area should leave,
“So that our teams can do what they need to do to take care of these people who are in need.”
A local triage center was set up at the high school in town to help those who had been injured. It was Canton Mayor Lou Ann Everett who noted the heartbreaking and upsetting damage that had been done to the city. The tornadoes hit and destructed an area 35 miles long and 15 miles wide. Some of the damages they’ve have come across are downed power lines as well as leaks at various houses.
54 patients were received after the storm at the ETMC Regional Healthcare Systems hospitals. One person was reported as in critical condition. Spokeswoman Rebecca Berkeley noted everyone else’s injuries were non-life threatening.
Videos from the local news stations show the damaged area. There were uprooted trees, overturned cars, wet roadways and even flattened homes. A Dodge dealership had flipped pickup trucks, and the dealership was torn up.
Search and rescue group Texas Task Force II was deployed by Texas Governor Greg Abbott. They have been deployed to not just Canton but the Van Zandt area as well. A total of three tornadoes is what caused all the damage. The National Weather Service is still on high alert. KXAS-TV reported that Emory and Fruitvale were hit as well.
Ernestine Cook who is a resident told WFAA-TV the following about the tornadoes,
“It hit so hard, so fast. It just kept moving. I’ve never seen anything like it after 22 years of living here.”
Because of the Texan tornadoes those who were with their families while camping for the First Monday Trade Days event had to seek shelter in bathrooms. Some northern towns were even hit by the storm. Surveyors will conduct an investigation on Sunday to see how extensive the damage was.
Missouri was also hit hard by storms of their own. Flood waters rose in Christian County, and several people were left stranded in their cars. One car was swept away with a wife and a 72-year-old woman inside. The woman’s body was found on Saturday near Clever, Missouri.
Over 150 roads were closed in southern Missouri cause of the flooding. Over 93 evacuations took place and a total of 33 water rescues. As of Sunday morning, over 30 million Americans remain under warnings from the National Weather Service for flash floods. Rainfall was averaging four to six inches with it peaking at nine inches in some places.
The National Weather Service’s Storm Prediction Center noted that this is just the beginning,
“Severe thunderstorms capable of damaging winds and tornadoes are expected today into tonight, especially across the central Gulf Coast States. Other severe storms could occur as far north as the Midwest and southern Great Lakes region.”
AccuWeather senior meteorologist Dan Pydynowski told USA TODAY that,
“The good news for Texas, Arkansas, Missouri and Oklahoma is that things are shifting off to the east. That is bad news for Mississippi, Kentucky, Tennessee and Alabama.”
All of southern Missouri is under a declared state of emergency thanks to Governor Eric Greitens. The worst flooding for them is on the West Plains in southern Missouri. Their power was shut down, and they have been completely shut off because of the flood waters. The National Weather Service noted,
“Locations along Indian Creek, Bullskin Creek, Beaver Branch and the Elk River will experience unusual and life-threatening rises in flood levels. The cities of Anderson, Lanagan and Noel are included in this flash flood emergency.”
As these storms continue to rage on, the injured and death toll are expected to continue to rise. A handful are already dead while dozens upon dozens are confirmed injured. The storms appear to be hitting new states while leaving wreckage behind.
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