Devastating Tornado Strikes Omaha Suburbs Homes Demolished, Injuries Reported

Devastating Tornado Strikes Omaha Suburbs: Homes Demolished, Injuries Reported

OMAHA, Nebraska (AP)-  A tornado smashed through suburban Omaha, Nebraska, on Friday afternoon, demolishing homes and other structures as it tore across grassland and into suburbs. Injuries were recorded, although it was unclear whether anyone was killed in the storm.

Multiple tornadoes were reported in Nebraska, but the most severe storm went from a mostly rural area to the suburbs northwest of Omaha, a metropolis of 485,000 people.

Photos on social media revealed severely damaged homes and destroyed trees. A video showed homes in a rural area outside Omaha with their roofs stripped of shingles. Law enforcement was closing off roads in the region.

A KETV-TV video showed one woman being transported on a stretcher from a damaged home in Blair, a city just north of Omaha.

Another tornado struck the western border of Omaha, passing directly through Eppley Airfield, the city’s airport. According to Omaha Airport Authority Chief Strategy Officer Steve McCoy, officials have halted the airport to aircraft operations as they examine any damage in the region.

“We have people in the terminal who are in shelters right now, but the airport is still closed,” he added, adding that he was unaware of any injuries. Flight delays are expected, he stated.

After sweeping through the airport, the tornado crossed the Missouri River and entered Iowa just north of Council Bluffs.

Katrina Sperl, spokesman for the Nebraska Emergency Management Agency, stated that damage is only now being reported. Taylor Wilson, a representative for the University of Nebraska Medical Center, stated that no injuries had been reported so far. A tornado damaged an industrial business in Lancaster County on Friday afternoon, injuring three workers before it approached the Omaha region, according to sheriff’s officials.

According to sheriff’s officials, the structure located northeast of the state capital of Lincoln collapsed, trapping roughly 70 employees and several others. Everyone was evacuated, and three persons sustained non-life-threatening injuries, according to authorities.

Sheriff’s officials say they received reports of a tipped-over train near Waverly, also in Lancaster County.

The Omaha Public Power District stated that almost 10,000 customers were without power in the Omaha area.

The Weather Service also issued tornado watches in Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Oklahoma, and Texas. Forecasters cautioned that huge hail and destructive wind gusts were possible.

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