Tornados ripped through Texas and Oklahoma in the overnight on Wednesday, killing at least five people and damaging structures, reported ABC News.
Two people were killed in southern Oklahoma, and a third remains hospitalized, said Marshall County Emergency Management Director Robert Chaney.
~MUST WATCH~— Live Storm Chasers (@Livestormchaser) April 23, 2020
Terrifying video of a tornado ripping through parts of Madill, Oklahoma this evening.
Permission: Richard Donnell#Madill #Oklahoma #Tornado #OKwx@WeatherBug - #KnowBefore Download the app today! pic.twitter.com/baWKwrxgbe
Video shows massive tornado in southern Oklahoma, flinging sheet metal and debris into the air.— ABC News (@ABC) April 23, 2020
Officials in Marshall County confirm that at least two people were killed and several others injured. https://t.co/7al6N7mreb pic.twitter.com/OA7WTEHX8f
In Polk County, Texas, three people died and dozens were injured. A Polk County judge issued a national disaster declaration on Wednesday night due to "significant threats to life, health, and property."
A late afternoon long-track large #Tornado caused massive damage in Onalaska, Polk County, TX. This damage is along the Trinity River just off Highway 356. There were some injuries here. #severeweather @NWSHouston pic.twitter.com/6y2rIhsspN— Mike Seidel (@mikeseidel) April 23, 2020
Charles Stephens, a resident who witnessed the tornado, told the Houston Chronicle that he found his neighborhood dead in the water and several other neighbors severely injured.
"It's a lot of devastation," Stephens said. "I don't think anybody is going to be able to get (into the neighborhood)."
Stephens said once the tornado cleared, it took him and his wife nearly 45 mins to climb out of the house.
"It took me 45 minutes to climb through the roof to get out," he said, adding he was forced to use a hatchet to get his wife out of the debris.
Texas Governor Greg Abbott issued a statement that read:
"My office, the Texas Division of Emergency Management, and other state agencies are working with local officials to provide immediate support to the areas devastated by this tornado," Abbott said. "The state has already deployed response teams and medical resources to help Texans in need and to provide assistance to these communities. Our hearts are with our fellow Texans tonight and the state will continue to do everything it can to support those affected by this severe weather."
There were reports of tornados in Jasper, Texas, near the Louisiana border.
By 2230 ET Wednesday reports indicated that at least 21 tornados tore through Texas and Oklahoma.