Deadly tornadoes ripped through Midwest United States this weekend, causing enormous damage and killing a least 91 people, including 89 in Joplin, Missouri.
The tornado that struck Joplin on Sunday night was reportedly half-mile wide and uprooted trees and houses in its path. A significant tornado came through the middle section of Joplin near 6 p.m. on Sunday, May 22, the city issued a statement. Many homes and businesses have been affected, and Joplin Mayor Mike Woolston has declared a local disaster due to the damage of this storm.
Missouri Governor Jay Nixon has declared a state of emergency while U.S. President Barack Obama has pledged federal support. Obama, who in on a week-long tour in Europe, called Nixon personally extend his condolences and to express that all of the families of Joplin affected by the severe tornadoes are in his thoughts and prayers, White House spokesman Nicholas Shapiro.said.
We commend the heroic efforts by those who have responded and who are working to help their friends and neighbors at this very difficult time. At my direction, FEMA [Federal Emergency Management Agency] is working with the affected areas' state and local officials to support response and recovery efforts, and the federal government stands ready to help our fellow Americans as needed, Obama said in a statement on Monday.
This is the second time deadly tornadoes have caused havoc in the United States in less than two months. Between April 25 and 27, about 305 storms ripped through southern United States, killing 327 people, mostly in Alabama and causing damage estimated to be around $5 billion.
Violent storms are expected on Monday and southwestern Missouri and parts of Kansas and Oklahoma have been put on thunderstorm watch.
See the photos below on the destruction and carnage left behind by the tornado in Joplin: