Storms rip through Mid-South leaving dozens homeless - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Reported by Anna Marie Hartman

Storms rip through Mid-South leaving dozens homeless

The Pinpoint 5 Storm Team said strong storms were headed to the Mid-South and within hours, Arkansas Governor Mike Beebe declared Crittenden County a disaster area because of the damage caused by thunderstorms.

Power lines and trees were knocked down, but thankfully no one in the Mid-South was seriously hurt.

Dozens of homes were leveled, dozens more damaged when hurricane force winds roared through Crittenden County.

In a mobile home park in Proctor, neighbors began picking up the pieces. Their lives were scattered all over Shamrock Cove. A name that wasn't lucky Thursday night.

A woman was critically injured when the winds picked up then dropped her one month old trailer while she and her husband were inside.

"No fatalities involved and that's always a good thing," says Edmundson Fire Chief Michael Dozier.

Amidst the devastation, the mayor of nearby Anthonyville fired up his grill.

"People in need that are out working, trying to bring them something to eat," says Rev. Leroy Wright.

At the Edmundson fire station, Red Cross volunteers served food to displaced storm victims, while other volunteers went out to survey the damage.

National Weather Service investigators say the direction in which the debris fell looks like the work of straight line winds up to 80 miles an hour. The powerful product of a thunderstorm, not to be underestimated.

"And that's really the message we have to mention that severe thunderstorms producing straight line winds can be dangerous or deadly," says Jim Belles with the National Weather Service.

The recovery process is far from over. In a town this small, even volunteers tend to become overwhelmed.

"When your friends are hurt and people that you're dealing with it makes a lot of difference," says Volunteer Firefighter Tina Dozier.

One thing that's hampering the recovery effort is that hardly anyone in the path of this storm has power.

It could take a day or two before its restored and there is a boil water emergency in effect until further notice.

Officials say its safe to bath or wash clothes in the water but you must boil it if you're going to drink or cook with it.


Click here to email Anna Marie Hartman.
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