Sirens Didn’t Sound Until After Storm Hit, Mannford Family Says

Friday, April 29th 2016, 10:33 pm
By: Tess Maune

Friday marks 32 years since an F-4 tornado leveled parts of Mannford.

On Tuesday, a much weaker storm rolled through but it still caused significant damage to some properties, and neighbors said the storm came without any warning.

Mike Bradshaw was a home with his family Tuesday, keeping a close eye on the storm, when the National Weather Service issued a tornado warning for Creek County and the Mannford area.

But the Bradshaw family didn't know the area was under a tornado warning - their TVs went out when it was still considered a thunderstorm.

They said nothing was showing severe when they lost power, but not long after that, Bradshaw said, “She said, 'Mike, we're in trouble, it's hitting, it's hitting, something's hitting.' And when I walked out, I could look out that door and I just seen...I mean everything just…and it was from here to across the road.”

The storm tossed the Bradshaw's travel trailer about ten feet.

It destroyed one outbuilding, snapped power poles and crushed parts of their fence.

“She thought the roof was lifting, that's how bad it was,” Bradshaw said.

The city's storm sirens hadn't sounded and the reverse phone call system hadn't been activated either. So, Mike's wife called the City to let them know they'd been hit, and not long after, the sirens went off. But by then the storm had passed, one that Mike believes was much more than just wind.

“Nah, I think a tornado touched down. It was just too much,” he said.

The city's storm sirens are activated manually.

The city manager said city leaders go out to watch for rotation, and because they didn't see any, they didn't sound the sirens.

He said the decision to sound the sirens came when the city lost its TV signal.

The city manager said Mannford has only sounded the sirens about four times in ten years. He said he thinks sounding them when nothing happens causes more harm than good.