Mother and Child Killed in Latest Oklahoma Tornadoes

11:49 PM, May 31, 2013   |    comments
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Oklahoma tornado

OKLAHOMA CITY, OK -- The Oklahoma Highway Patrol says a mother and child were killed as tornadoes moved through Oklahoma City.

Tornadoes slammed Oklahoma City and its suburbs, crumbling cars and tractor-trailers.  The storm hit during the evening rush hour, causing havoc on I-40, a major artery connecting suburbs east and west of the city.

Another tornado was reported on the ground in Moore, where a mammoth May 20 twister killed 24 people and left the southern Oklahoma City suburb in ruins, KOKH-TV reported.

Winds were reportedly between 80 and 100 mph. Tornado warnings were posted for several central Oklahoma counties. At 8:15 p.m. CT (9:15 p.m. ET), the National Weather Service tweeted that the tornado threat was decreasing.

As the storms raced east, multiple funnel clouds touched down west of Oklahoma City, with TV video capturing one violent tornado on the ground.

Cars and tractor-trailers flipped on I-40, and motorists were stranded bumper to bumper on I-35 in what the weather service described as "a parking lot."

"Please try to get to a building or safe shelter!" the weather service in Norman tweeted.

One twister destroyed The Weather Channel's "Tornado Hunt" car near El Reno.

"My biggest concern right now is the traffic that is out on the highway right now," Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin said.

The National Guard and Oklahoma Highway Patrol were working to move people to shelters and get traffic moving, CNN reported.

About 1,000 passengers at the Will Rogers Airport were evacuated to an underground tunnel until the threat passed, KFOR-TV reported. No flights were arriving or departing.

Just before 7:30 p.m. CT, a tornado was reported near the airport.

More than 49,000 people had lost power in the area, Oklahoma Gas & Electric reported. The National Weather Service warned of serious flash flooding.

A "large, violent, life-threatening tornado" roared through downtown Oklahoma City about 7:20 p.m. CT (8:20 p.m. ET), KOKH-TV said.

Various twisters touched down or spun aloft near El Reno, about 25 miles west of downtown Oklahoma City. Eyewitnesses reported utility poles down and livestock scattered across roads.

The tornado was on track to hit Midwest City after Oklahoma City. Another was spotted on the ground near Del City and moving toward Tinker Air Force Base.  

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