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Oklahoma tornado leaves 4 dead, thousands without power

Tornado outbreak in Oklahoma kills 4, leaves thousands without power. Severe weather causes extensive damage in Sulphur. Viral devastation.

The destructive force of tornadoes wreaked havoc in Oklahoma, claiming the lives of four people and leaving thousands without power. The severe weather outbreak decimated buildings in Sulphur, a rural town, causing extensive damage across a 15-block radius. Oklahoma Governor Kevin Stitt expressed shock at the level of destruction, with many downtown buildings reduced to rubble and roofs torn off houses.

The impact of the tornadoes was felt by over 20,000 people who remained without electricity after the storms hit late Saturday night. In Sulphur, about 30 people were injured, some of whom were in a bar when the tornado tore through the town. Hospitals across the state reported approximately 100 injuries, ranging from cuts and debris strikes to falls.

The devastation in Oklahoma was part of a larger pattern of severe weather across the nation's midsection since Friday, with flood watches and warnings issued for multiple states. The tornado in Sulphur originated in a city park before rampaging through the downtown area, leaving a trail of destruction in its wake. Residents like Kelly Trussell expressed disbelief at the level of devastation and pondered the daunting task of rebuilding.

The aftermath of the tornadoes also brought dangerous flooding and water rescues to Oklahoma, with rising lake levels shutting down the Chickasaw National Recreation Area. Governor Stitt declared a state of emergency in 12 counties due to the severe weather fallout, as more than 20,000 customers remained without power. The community sought refuge in places like the Sulphur High School gym, where families huddled together as the storm passed.

The impact of the tornadoes was not limited to Oklahoma, as neighboring states like Nebraska and Iowa also experienced significant damage. A tornado in suburban Omaha demolished homes and businesses, moving through farmland and subdivisions before hitting an Iowa town. The tornado outbreak began in Nebraska, causing an industrial building to collapse with people trapped inside, though thankfully, no lives were lost.

Governors Jim Pillen of Nebraska and Kim Reynolds of Iowa surveyed the damage and coordinated assistance for affected communities. Formal damage assessments are ongoing, with plans to seek federal aid to support recovery efforts. The resilience of communities facing the aftermath of these devastating tornadoes serves as a testament to the human spirit in the face of natural disasters.

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