Oklahoma Weather Blog

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Quapaw tornado update

by Bryan Painter Published: April 30, 2014
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RECOVERY CONTINUES AFTER QUAPAW TORNADO
The town of Quapaw continues to recover from the effects of the tornado that hit the northeast Oklahoma community Sunday evening. OEM staff remain in Quapaw assisting local officials with tornado recovery.

 

STATE OF EMERGENCY
Governor Mary Fallin declared a state of emergency Monday for Ottawa County due to a tornado that struck Quapaw on Sunday. Under the Executive Order, state agencies can make emergency purchases and acquisitions needed to expedite the delivery of resources to local jurisdictions. The declaration also marks a first step toward seeking federal assistance should it be necessary.

 

SHELTERS AND MASS CARE

A shelter at the Quapaw Wellness Center for residents displaced by the storms is scheduled to close today. The shelter has been open since Sunday evening and was operated by the American Red Cross and the Quapaw Tribe.

 

A Multi-Agency Resource Center is now open at the Quapaw Title VI Building at 905 Whitebird Street next to the Wellness Center. The following organizations will have representatives available at the Resource Center:

American Legion, American Red Cross, Catholic Charities, Center for Independent Living, Grand Lake Mental Health Association, Legal Aid Services, Oklahoma Emergency Response Team, Oklahoma Insurance Department, Ottawa County Health Department, Quapaw Tribe of Oklahoma, The Salvation Army and UMCOR-United Methodist.

 

Oklahoma Baptist Disaster Relief has two chainsaw teams and one roof tarping team in the area to assist homeowners. Approximately 40-50 volunteers are assisting, including four chaplains.

 

The American Red Cross and Oklahoma Baptist Disaster Relief are providing meals twice a day for residents impacted by the storms.

 

DONATION FUND ESTABLISHED

The First State Bank of Commerce is accepting monetary donations for the “Quapaw Citizen Relief Fund.” Donations must be presented at the bank located at 101 N Mickey Mantle Blvd. in Commerce, OK 74339. All funds will be designated for residents affected by the tornado.

 

The Quapaw Senior Class of 2014 will be the first to donate to the fund. The senior class has chosen to forfeit its class trip and donate those funds to tornado survivors.

 

TETANUS VACCINATIONS AVAILABLE
Ottawa County Health Department is offering tetanus vaccinations at the Quapaw Title VI Building at 905 Whitebird Street as well as through a mobile clinic within Quapaw city limits. The tetanus vaccinations are free of charge. More than 50 vaccinations have been administered since Monday.

 

FATALITIES AND INJURIES

The Office of the Chief Medical Examiner reports one fatality in Quapaw attributed to the tornado.

 

Quapaw Fire Officials report five people were injured Sunday.

 

DAMAGE ASSESSMENTS

Damage assessments are ongoing this week. However, early estimates show nearly 50 homes and businesses were damaged in the storm.

 

POWER OUTAGES

Oklahoma Corporation Commission reports Empire Electric has 381 customers without power in Quapaw and Picher.

 

As progress is made on the restoration effort, customers should be aware if they have damage to their meter base or weatherhead, a licensed contractor needs to complete repairs before Empire Electric can safely reconnect service.

 

COMMUNICATIONS

AT&T placed a Cell On Wheels at the Wellness Center to ensure good coverage in the area and to help with any network overload that might occur as responders work the area. They also placed a charging station to that location.

 

LOST AND FOUND

A “Lost and Found” is now located at City Hall at 410 Main Street. Residents may claim lost items during regular business hours.

 

DIAL 211

For Oklahoma residents seeking non-emergency disaster or health and human service information, please contact your local 2-1-1. Services are available 24 hours a day by dialing 2-1-1 from your home or cellular telephone. Please only call 911 for emergencies.


by Bryan Painter
Assistant Local Editor
Bryan Painter, assistant local editor, has 31 years’ experience in journalism, including 22 years with the state's largest newspaper, The Oklahoman. In that time he has covered such events as the April 19, 1995 bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah...
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