(CNN) – At least 24 people — including nine children — were killed when a massive tornado struck an area outside Oklahoma City on Monday afternoon, officials said.
Read more: Heartbreaking scenes in Oklahoma City after disaster
At least seven of those children were killed at Plaza Towers Elementary School in Moore, Oklahoma, police said. Emergency personnel on Tuesday continued to scour the school’s rubble — a scene of twisted I-beams and crumbled cinder blocks.
The tornado was 1.3 miles wide as it moved through Moore, in the southern part of the Oklahoma City metropolitan area, the National Weather Service said. The estimated peak wind ranged from 200 to 210 mph — which would make it an EF5, the most powerful category of tornadoes possible — according to the agency.
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— About 2,400 homes were damaged in the Oklahoma cities of Moore and Oklahoma City, said Jerry Lojka of the Oklahoma Department of Emergency Management. Some 10,000 people were directly impacted by the tornado, he said.
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— Gov. Mary Fallin said the tornado was “one of (the) most horrific storms and disasters that this state has ever faced.” Oklahoma “will get through this. … We will overcome. We will rebuild. We will regain our strength,” she said.
How do you really prepare for something like this, so many lives are once again lost because of natural disaster, the reality there is no way possible to tame nature, my heart goes out to the people in the heartland of our country. The thing that pissed me off last night was when I was flipping through my channels hoping to see other news networks covering the tornado I saw so called major networks covering other senseless bull crap. HLN, Fox News and MSNBC should be ashamed to call themselves real Americans, much respect goes to Anderson Cooper and CNN for putting American lives before everything else.