Staff Writer Carrie Coppernoll reports:
Nurses with the Oklahoma City-County Health Department will be giving free tetanus shots to clean-up workers helping the metro area recover after the deadly tornados Tuesday. Two teams of nurses will travel throughout neighborhoods in Oklahoma City and Edmond giving out free shots. Health officials recommend a tetanus shot for cleanup workers who have not had a shot within the last five to 10 years. Tetanus shots prevent infection and complications caused by cuts and puncture woods from nails, glass or other debris. Deep wounds should receive immediate medical care. For more information, call 427-8651 or go to www.cchdoc.com.
10:50 a.m. Wednesday
Staff Writer Robert Medley reports:
Insurance adjusters, contractors and restaurant managers are in restaurants along Northwest Expressway in Oklahoma City. Plywood is being used to cover broken windows and holes in buildings just east of N Rockwell Avenue, while workers tried to secure buildings.
Still, Northwest Expressway has been reopened after it was temporarily closed immediately following last night’s thunderstorms.
Kathy Strain, facilities manager from the Texas headquarters Chuck E. Cheese’s, arrived at the restaurant at 6817 Northwest Expressway about 10 a.m. today.
“I just walked on the scene five minutes ago; I’m meeting with contractors. We have a lot of damage,” Strain said.
Contractor John Jeffreys of Dallas-based Parkway Construction said the restaurant will likely be closed three to four weeks.
“We’re just looking at it right now. Then we’ll have to look at a time frame” for reopening, Jeffreys said.
Fazoli’s, 6821 Northwest Expressway, and El Chico, 6801 Northwest Expressway, were also damaged.
Fazoli’s general manager Tom Connelly says he hopes to reopen the restaurant on Thursday.
Nine people were in El Chico when the storm hit. They hid in a walk-in freezer.
11:31 a.m. Wednesday
Staff Writer Bryan Painter reports:
Mike Foster, meteorologist in charge with the National Weather Service Norman Forecast Office, and Rick Smith, warning coordination meteorologist, are in Lone Grove to assess the damage.
They will determine an estimated wind speed based on the kind of damage to a particular type of building/structure. That speed is used to determine the Enhance Fujita scale rating, such as an EF-2.
Out of all the damage assessed, the highest rating given to any one point will be the rating for the tornado. For example, if most of the damage is at the EF-1 level (caused by sustained wind gusts of 86 to 110 mph), but assessors spot damage to one structure that is at the higher EF-3 level (136 to 165 mph), then the whole tornado will be considered an EF-3.
A determination probably will not be made until later this evening.
Horseman Rick Hartline says a tornado this afternoon ripped through the usually serene pastures where we keep horses.
It was a good thing Rick got onto the property because winds snapped posts in one pasture and destroyed most of the fence on one side. So Rick and a friend had to catch a mare, her colt and another filly and move them to another pasture.
Thank goodness, the fences along the roadway around 150th and Penn were apparently still standing. Even better, Venture, my old mare; Griffin, Oreo, Silk Doll, Bella, Winter and the other horses were all fine.
The wind peeled off part of the new roof on the horse runs and blew out one side of the horse runs – fortunately, the side that we hadn’t re-paneled or painted as we (OK, mostly my husband) had the rest of the shed over the last couple of weeks.
My husband, Terry, couldn’t reach our leased land with Pennsylvania closed because of the debris and workers cleaning up split power lines.
Rick called us from the farm around 7 p.m. and said he couldn’t get off the property until they could move more of the debris.
I’m not complaining. I’ve worried about horses and bad weather my entire life but this is one of the closest calls yet. We’ll try to go back out tomorrow morning….
- Features Editor Sonya Colberg
A Tornado Warning is in effect for Pontotoc and Coal Counties.
If you live in or around Fittstown and Stonewall, seek shelter. The Tornado Warning remains in effect for Murray, Johnston and Pontotoc Counties.
THe tornado that reportedly came through Lone Grove is not thought to be on the ground at this time but circulation still exists so continue shelter precautions north and northeast of Ardmore.
Tornado warning for SW Pontotoc, NW Johnston and SE Murray Counties.