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Tornadoes, flooding affect 7 western states

Death toll from Friday's Oklahoma tornadoes now 16

June 3, 2013

As many as 16 people have died from injuries they received Friday when the latest in a weeks-long series of tornado-spawning storms tore through parts of Oklahoma. At least five tornadoes struck there late Friday, officials said. The death toll may rise further.

The Oklahoma City metropolitan area bore the brunt of the storms’ fury. Four people died in the western suburb of El Reno, and two in Union City.

The Tulsa Word reported, “At least 16 people-including five children and three Veteran storm chasers- were dead and the search continued Sunday for more victims of tornadoes and floodwaters that swept through the Oklahoma City area Friday night.”

The three storm chasers were killed in El Reno: Tim Samaras, 55, founder of the tornado research company, Twistex; his son, Paul Samaras, 24; and Carl Young, 45, a Twistex meteorologist.

Oklahoma City Fire Chief Keith Bryant said authorities will resume their search Monday for six people still unaccounted for, including four who took shelter in storm drains.

After the tornadoes, 8 to 11 inches of rain doused Oklahoma City.

In Missouri, a tornado “caused dozens and dozens of houses to be literally blown up” Governor Jay Nixon said. No one died in the tornado, but three people drowned, Nixon said.

In Arkansas, flooding killed at least four people CNN reported.

There were also flash flood warnings in place for parts of Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, and Kansas.

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