Deadly Kansas And Missouri Tornadoes

Thursday, March 1st 2007, 8:58 am
By: News On 6

CAULFIELD, Mo. (AP) _ Tornadoes swept through southern Missouri around dawn Thursday, damaging homes and businesses and killing at least one person a few hours after another twister touched down in Kansas, authorities said.

A 7-year-old child was killed in Missouri, and there were reports of people missing from the Caulfield area, said State Highway Patrol Sgt. Marty Elmore.

Howell County Sheriff Robbie Crites identified the victim as Elizabeth Croney, whose mother, father and a brother were injured when a tornado hit their mobile home in a rural wooded area 16 miles southwest of West Plains.

It took paramedics about an hour to reach the home, and they had to use chain saws to cut through wooded debris blocking the road.

At least four mobile homes, two houses and two service stations in Caulfield were damaged when the twisters hit around 6:30 a.m., and a tornado also touched down near an elementary school in Caulfield. Two more tornadoes were also reported in the area, said Mike Wade, a dispatcher at the Howell County Sheriff's Office.

``We're just trying to get help out to them at this point,'' Wade said.

The burst of tornadoes was part of a larger line of thunderstorm and snowstorms that stretched from Minnesota to Louisiana. In Nebraska, strong wind and heavy snow caused whiteout conditions in eastern Nebraska that forced the shutdown of 75 miles of Interstate 80.

In Kansas' Linn County, along the Missouri state line, a tornado Wednesday night destroyed a power substation, and roofs and siding were torn from buildings, Linn County Emergency Management Director David Yates said. He said some minor injuries were reported.

The storm also ripped out poles and electric lines, but power was expected to be restored by the end of the day, said Paul Norris, operations manager for Heartland Rural Electric Cooperative.