5 dead in tornado outbreak - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

5 dead in tornado outbreak

OKLAHOMA (ABC)-- Residents of Oklahoma and the Southern Plains were devastated by a daylong onslaught of tornadoes and violent weather yesterday that killed five people and injured dozens.  They're cleaning up Tuesday morning and thankful for advanced warning that kept most alive.

Nearly 80 people were in Love's Country store in Oklahoma County when the tornado warnings sounded. This giant twister touched down right out front of the store. Employees herded customers inside a giant walk-in cooler.

At least five people were killed and dozens injured during an outbreak of violent weather Monday that dropped tornadoes and four inch hail across portions of the Southern Plains.  In some neighborhoods, emergency workers were going door to door to make sure everyone was accounted for.

Jennifer Newell of the Norman, Oklahoma Police Department says, "For the safety of everybody we need to keep people off the roads. We've got electrical lines down, we have people who need our help and we can't get to them if the roads are clogged up."

Among the most dramatic of the storms was this multi-vortex tornado that dropped from the sky near the small town of Wakita, Oklahoma, north of Oklahoma City.  The description from one eyewitness was a familiar one.

One tornado survivor says, "It sounded just like a freight train rolling by the house. It ripped the garage door right off the side of the house there and I knew it was gone when it was just bright, bright daylight inside."

Tuesday morning, authorities are busy assessing the damage and trying to restore power to more than 37,000 homes and businesses statewide.

Online Reporter: Jill Courtney

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