Two people were critically injured Tuesday when a tornado hit Dodge City, Kansas, authorities told NBC News.
At least two other tornadoes described as “large and extremely dangerous” were reported Tuesday in Kansas. No injuries were reported, and preliminary reports of minor damage from a probable tornado in Oklahoma hadn’t been confirmed.
Interim Ford County Administrator J.D. Gilbert said the Dodge City tornado destroyed the county’s landfill building and caused other significant damage. He said the two critically injured victims, who weren’t immediately identified, were the only people known to need treatment.
The second tornado skirted the town of Lewis, Kansas, about 50 miles northwest of Wichita. The third tornado was spotted early Tuesday evening in rural Scott County. Meanwhile, Oklahoma authorities were investigating reports that a half-dozen structures may have been damaged near Bristow, about 45 miles northeast of Oklahoma City.
The Dodge City tornado “just, and I mean just,” missed the center of downtown, said Ari Sarsalari, a meteorologist for The Weather Channel.
He described the twister as “very violent,” with large hail, and he said most of Dodge City’s residents were lucky to have survived a “very close call.”
Most watches and warnings had expired by mid-evening, but similar conditions are expected through the week as a series of large storm systems passes through the Plains states, the National Weather Service said.
Severe storms with hail and damaging winds are possible across the region every day this week, the agency said, with locally heavy rainfall posing a risk for flooding over parts of the Great Plains and the Mississippi Valley.
Flooding in Jonesboro, Arkansas, inspired emergency authorities Tuesday to have a little fun on Twitter.