Tornadoes swept the Midwest tonight. A tornado reportedly hit a hospital in Creston, Iowa.
This tornado touched down near Cherokee, Oklahoma.
A possible tornado struck a hospital Saturday evening in Creston, Iowa, according to a dispatcher with the Union County Sheriff’s Department. A search-and-rescue operation was under way.
“We have been hit. We are triaging and moving patients,” a spokeswoman at Greater Regional Medical Center in the south-central Iowa city confirmed.
The development came as a series of tornadoes and supercell thunderstorms churned Saturday evening toward larger cities in the southern and central Plains. Storm chasers broadcast images of funnel clouds roaring through rural landscapes.
Residents in some areas received new warnings intended to grab their attention and prompt them to find safe shelter.
In Kansas, Gov. Sam Brownback issued this advisory: “If you’re on the road, get off as soon as you can and find some shelter.”
The region had 48 preliminary tornado reports by 8:30 p.m. ET Saturday, according to CNN meteorologist Jacqui Jeras. Most were in rural areas and damage was reported to be relatively minor, including downed trees and power lines and minor flooding.
At least 17,000 people are without power tonight.
The Des Moines Register reported:
Warren Woods, the mayor of the city of Creston, said he has been monitoring local radio reports.
He said there is damage near and at the hospital.
“Most of the city is without power,” he said.
He also heard the roof had been torn off a bank on the south end of town.
Meanwhile, MidAmerican Energy said more than 17,000 Des Moines-area customers had lost electricity.