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USSioux Falls tornado: Buildings in South Dakota's biggest city get shredded by an overnight tornado

17:00  11 september  2019
17:00  11 september  2019 Source:   cnn.com

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The 2003 South Dakota tornado outbreak, known locally as " Tornado Tuesday", was a tornado outbreak that occurred in the southeastern and east central part of South Dakota in the United States

A tornado struck Sioux Falls , South Dakota , late Tuesday, causing “significant structural damage” and massive power losses in the city , the mayor and other officials said. Sioux Falls officials asked people not to travel because of downed power lines and trees, and Mayor Paul TenHaken shared a photo of

Sioux Falls tornado: Buildings in South Dakota's biggest city get shredded by an overnight tornado© Abigail Collins/Argus Leader

A storm that tore across Sioux Falls overnight was so treacherous, even weather forecasters had to pause their work and hunker down.

Now city officials are investigating why not all of the city's outdoor warning sirens sounded like they should have.

The severe weather that struck South Dakota's largest city spawned at least one tornado, the National Weather Service said.

"Obviously we had widespread damage throughout the entire city," said Todd Heitkamp of the weather service's Sioux Falls office. "Most of that damage was a result of probably 100-mph-plus winds. And some of the damage was a little bit more intense, and we're suspecting that was a result of some brief, spin-up tornadoes."

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This article is a list of tornadoes that have impacted the central business district (downtown or city centre) of a large city (that is, one having at least 50,000 people

The tornado outbreak of May 4–6, 2007 was a major and damaging tornado outbreak that significantly affected portions of the Central United States. The most destructive tornado in the outbreak occurred on the evening of May 4 in western Kansas

Eight people at the Avera Behavioral Health Center were injured in the storm, Sioux Falls Mayor Paul TenHaken told CNN.

The hospital suffered storm damage and was evacuated.

Across the city, at least 37 structures either collapsed or had integrity issues, the fire department said.

At 11:30 p.m. Tuesday night, employees at the local National Weather Service office paused and took shelter "due to the fact that our employees felt that their safety was being jeopardized," Heitkamp said.

The office "shifted the responsibility of the warnings to our sister office up in Aberdeen. And then at about 11:35 we resumed those responsibilities."

While residents sift through the debris Wednesday, the city is investigating what went wrong with the outdoor siren system.

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The large tornado also left damage and injured at least 9 people, according to South Dakota Gov. The town was opened to residents Monday morning so they could get in and survey the wreckage. Delmont is located in southern South Dakota , about 90 miles southwest of Sioux Falls .

Two Tornadoes Cause Damage in Minnesota. Two tornadoes tore through McLeod County over More than two dozen reported tornadoes were spotted Sunday up and down the Plains, ripping up Earlier Sunday, the small South Dakota town of Delmont was partially destroyed by a large twister.

Sioux Falls tornado: Buildings in South Dakota's biggest city get shredded by an overnight tornado© Abigail Collins/Argus Leader "There was actually a breach of our protocol, in that not the entirety of the siren system was sounded," the mayor said. "So we're doing an internal investigation on why that happened, why the existing protocol was not followed."

But Heitkamp stressed that the sirens are outdoor warning sirens, not tornado sirens, and shouldn't be used as the only method of getting tornado alerts.

"Those sirens are not meant to warn people that are inside. They're meant to warn people that are outdoors," he said. "That's why it's important to have multiple methods to receive weather information."

The mayor urged residents to stay off the roads, especially because of power outages throughout the city.

About 8,500 electricity customers were in the dark Wednesday morning, Xcel Energy said. That's down from a peak of 25,000 customers without power immediately after the storm.

First tornadoes in 18 years hit Sioux Falls, leaving destruction in their wake.
Several powerful tornadoes have left a trail of destruction in South Dakota.

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