A series of destructive tornadoes tore through Ohio’s Miami Valley Monday night, with some so close together that they crossed paths, according to CBS News. No fatalities have been reported and the total number of injuries is undetermined.
Early Tuesday morning, Montgomery County confirmed via Twitter that a “large and dangerous tornado touched down last night,” just outside Dayton. It completely leveled homes and entire buildings, leaving over 80,000 people without power, and affecting more than 5 million.
Following the power outage, the City of Dayton asked its residents to “conserve water” in a tweet that read: “Due to the widespread power outages we are asking all Dayton and Montgomery County Customers to conserve water. We have lost power to both water plants and pump stations. First Responders are performing search and rescue operations and debris clearing.”
The city later issued a boil advisory for all water as well.
Due to the widespread power outages we are asking all Dayton and Montgomery County Customers to conserve water. We have lost power to both water plants and pump stations. First Responders are performing search and rescue operations and debris clearing. #daytontornado— City of Dayton, Ohio (@cityofdayton) May 28, 2019
Map of area impacted by boil advisory and possible water outages. pic.twitter.com/XWpmxsjZIg— Montgomery County (@MCOhio) May 28, 2019
Search and rescue operations began overnight and have continued into Tuesday, according to Dayton Fire Chief Jeff Payne, who told CBS that some people were pulled from buildings on Monday night, but only three suffered minor injuries.
“I don’t know that any community that is fully prepared for this type of devastation,” Dayton Assistant Fire Chief Nicholas Hosford told ABC’s Good Morning America on Tuesday morning. “We have homes flattened, entire apartment complexes destroyed, businesses throughout our community where walls have collapsed.”
As of Tuesday morning, no fatalities have yet been reported, which Hosford credits to “early notification” and action taken by residents in the area.
We have been getting inquiries from folks concerned about loved ones, and our hearts go out to you and your family. At this time, there have been no reported fatalities. #DaytonTornado— Montgomery County (@MCOhio) May 28, 2019
A preliminary map of the affected area is available here: https://t.co/9Q2Zi7kiuO pic.twitter.com/2vqLhMT1jw
“I think the reduction in injuries is in key part to the early notification and people taking those warning seriously, moving to safe areas of their homes,” Hosford told ABC.
Numerous roads have been closed as authorities clear debris with snowplows and several shelters have been set up for those displaced by the storm.
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According to ABC, this was just one of 51 tornadoes that were reported in Idaho, Colorado, Nebraska, Iowa, Minnesota, Illinois, Indiana and Ohio on Monday. They are the latest in an onslaught of powerful thunderstorms, tornadoes and flash floods that have ravaged the Midwest in the past week — and forecasters are warning that there’s more ahead.
Tornado threats continue into Tuesday and Wednesday, with areas from Kansas City to western Illinois and eastern Ohio to Pennsylvania most at risk, ABC reported.