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Rare winter tornadoes in Midwest leave at least 2 dead

(CNN) — A rare winter outbreak of tornadoes hammered the Midwest on Monday night, killing at least two people and leaving a path of destruction across two Missouri counties, authorities said.

A line of tornadoes shadowed Interstate 44, running from the southwest to the northeast.

The storms killed an elderly woman in the Strafford area and a 53-year-old woman near Marshfield, officials said. Both towns are northeast of Springfield.

The National Weather Service said it received 37 reports of tornadoes on Monday night. Watch I-Reporter’s video of Illinois storm

Storms pounded the Midwest after a day of record-high temperatures across much of the country, with tornadoes also reported or suspected in Arkansas and Oklahoma and along the Illinois-Wisconsin border, The Associated Press reported.

It’s very unseasonable for this time of year, National Weather Service meteorologist Benjamin Sipprell told the AP. The atmosphere is just right.

Kenosha County, Wisconsin, Sheriff David Beth also told the AP: I have never seen damage like this in the summertime when we have potential for tornadoes. To see something like this in January is mind-boggling to me. This is just unimaginable to me.

CNN meteorologist Jacqui Jeras said more tornadoes were possible in the Midwest, especially Tuesday afternoon and evening.

Public Information Officer Jenny Fillmer Edwards said the storms cut through the Greene County, Missouri, area around 6 p.m. At least 25 people were planning to spend the night in a Red Cross shelter in Strafford, Edwards said.

In Webster County, the heaviest damage was reported in Marshfield, just west of I-44, according to Webster County Sheriff’s Department dispatcher Jodi Goodpaster.

One of the women died in the Niangua community about seven miles north of Marshfield. Goodpaster said numerous other people were injured.

Sgt. Gil Benn of the Kenosha County Sheriff’s Department in Wisconsin told WISN that six to eight homes were severely damaged in or near the town of Wheatland, and an unknown number of cars were blown off a nearby highway.

Aurora Medical Group facilities in the area treated 12 people for minor, storm-related injuries, WISN reported.
found here.

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January 8, 2008 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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