Governor Mary Fallin Tours Tulsa Tornado Damage
TULSA, Oklahoma - Governor Mary Fallin is in town to survey tornado damage in Tulsa. Fallin started her tour at the Tulsa Police Department Mobile Command at Promenade Mall and thanking first responders for their work.
Fallin said the state would do everything they could to help businesses that are losing revenue in the damage and to help people get back on their feet.
"We're very sorry that they've been hit. Loss of homes is never fun; it's a scary thing to go through - loss of property," she said.
She also noted that with the timing of the storm, "we got lucky."
Although the damage is significant, if the tornado had hit when businesses were open and the streets were full of cars, it might have caused significant loss of life, she noted.
The governor also addressed the lack of emergency sirens.
"We should always look at ways to improve our systems, and this was kind of what I would call kind of a freak incident that was totally unexpected and even caught the National Weather Service off guard," she said.
Albert Ashwood, director of the Oklahoma Department of Emergency Management, said: "Sometimes technology just can't keep up with Mother Nature."
Tulsa Mayor G.T. Bynum and other city representatives joined Fallin for the tour.
Tulsa businesses took a huge hit in the August 6 storm, with four destroyed, 68 with major damage, 57 with minor damage and 23 others affected in some way by the storm, according to Tulsa Area Emergency Management Agency.
Access to 41st Street is back open, but several businesses are still closed because their buildings were condemned. The city posted signs saying the buildings were "unfit for human occupancy" and that the fire marshal is closing them off.
Terrie Capener with Block Advisors showed up and found out that she and her employees were not allowed inside.
"I think everybody is still in shock and waiting to see what's going on and what the damage was," she said.
Condemned businesses include:
- AT&T Store
- Woodcraft Store
- Aspen Dental
- TGI Fridays
- The Flame Broiler
- Vintage Stock
- H&R Block