Published: Fri, May 19, 2017
Economy | By Annette Adams

Barron tornado kills one, injures more than 25

Barron tornado kills one, injures more than 25

Authorities have identified the man who was killed by a Tuesday night twister, Beckham County Sheriff Derek Manning said.

Gov. Scott Walker has declared a state of emergency for three counties in northwestern Wisconsin following a deadly tornado and damaging storms.

The governor told reporters it was "nothing short of a miracle" that more people weren't hurt.

Barron County Sheriff Chris Fitzgerald described the scene at Prairie Lakes Estates mobile home park, with 50 to 60 trailers, as "total devastation" and said first responders could hear people yelling for help when they arrived.

Several tornado warnings were issued as severe thunderstorms moved east across western Wisconsin and northern Wisconsin as the night went on. KCCI says trees and power lines were down in West Des Moines and severe weather tipped over semi trucks on local roads. Shards of glass were flying at them like bullets, Tyson said: "When your house comes apart like that, there's no place to go".

Jennie-O also confirmed a turkey farm near Chetek's Prairie Lake Estates mobile park suffered damage from Tuesday's tornado.

Besides the mobile home park, there were several reports of other structures and vehicles damaged with downed trees in other parts of Barron County, Fitzgerald said.

Possible tornadoes were spotted over Weyerhaeuser, Wisconsin, near McLean, Texas, and in Bucklin, Kansas, Tuesday.

In eastern Nebraska, winds damaged homes, farms and businesses and left thousands of people without electricity.

"We ended up on the rubble, glass and stuff underneath us", said Gloria Myer, who lost her home.

"This is, I think in terms of outright damage, both physical in terms of what it did to the landscape, but also in terms of the damage destroying people's homes I think it's the worst I've seen as governor".

The severe storm that hit the Chetek area started to develop about two hours earlier in the St. Paul area, according to meteorologist Mike Griesinger of the National Weather Service in Chanhassen.

All severe modes are possible including strong tornadoes, baseball size hail and damaging winds exceeding 80 miles per hour. It was not immediately known if there were injuries.

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