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Killer tornado hits DC area

BY SUSAN KIM | LAUREL, MD | September 24, 2001

This time it was Mother Nature that attacked the DC metro area in with tornadoes, flash flooding and severe weather.

During Monday's rush hour a funnel cloud moved up Interstate 95, forming in central Virginia and moving north into Maryland.

Funnel clouds touched down several times. What forecasters are describing as an F3 tornado ripped through the heart of the University of Maryland campus in College Park, MD. Two people in a vehicle outside a dormitory were killed, according to Mark Brady, spokesperson for Prince George's County fire and rescue.

Brady said that four other people sustained injuries in College Park when a trailer owned by the Maryland Fire Institute collapsed. Several dormitories were damaged, and scores of students were evacuated because of gas leaks.

Thick trees were split in half by the twister, and thousands were without power throughout the area.

In Laurel, MD, an apartment complex lost its roof.

A tornado also touched down in The Plains, in central Virginia, where one home was destroyed and a barn was flattened.

Flash floods were also hitting areas stretching from central Virginia to western Maryland as heavy rain blanketed the area.

Damages were also reported in Culpeper, VA.

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