The Edmond Sun

Local News

May 20, 2013

UPDATE: Tornado damages 12 homes in Edmond

Clean up begins across east Edmond

EDMOND — Twelve homes were damaged in the Edmond area by Sunday afternoon’s tornado. Major damage impacted three of the homes while the other eight homes had minor damage, said Matt Stillwell, director of the city’s emergency communications and management.

At about 3:47 p.m. Sunday, outdoor warning sirens began to blow in east Edmond. Police spokeswoman Jenny Monroe said point of contact for the tornado appeared to be in the 33rd and Bryant area. From there, the path went to the northeast and crossed I-35, Monroe said.

Stillwell reported to the Edmond City Council this morning that homes in the Thornbrooke neighborhood at 33rd and Bryant and in The Territories neighborhood east of I-35 suffered various degrees of damage.

“Most of the homes were in Thornbrooke,” Stillwell said. “We do have some damage to some homes just on the west side of Arcadia Lake.”

Of these homes affected by the tornado, Stillwell characterized the damage as major to three homes and minor to the remaining eight homes. The city continues to assess damage today, Stillwell said.

“Certainly our hearts and thoughts are with the families in Edmond that suffered damage in the storm,” Stillwell said. “But if you look in the perspective of what we’ve seen in Shawnee and Carney, it certainly could have been worse.”

The Edmond Fire Department responded with mutual aid to Carney, Stillwell said.

Stillwell’s day Sunday began about 2 p.m., when his office began paying closer attention to the developing weather. The city sounded sirens a total of three times after the tornado warning was issued for Oklahoma County. Emergency management personnel finished responding about 9:30 p.m.

At one point, after power fluctuations, the city’s emergency operations center switched to back up, Stillwell said.

Elsewhere, trees were blown down around Arcadia Lake, but officials were not aware of any issues with campers, said Nicole Offutt, administrative assistant with the city. It appeared the tornado tracked near or possibly over the lake, Offutt said.

Mercy Hospital officials were meeting Monday morning to discuss the situation at the Mercy Edmond I-35 site, which was nearly completed when the tornado struck.

“There is roof damage  and damage to a large section of windows going across the front,” said Rachel Wright, Mercy spokesperson. “There’s flagpoles down and billboards down. The good thing is it is still under construction but nobody was here.”

City Manager Larry Stevens met with Mercy officials Monday morning, Stillwell said, and reported that damage at the site could be in the millions of dollars. Edmond Electric is also working to replace electrical feeds to the Mercy site, said Glenn Fisher, Edmond Electric utility director.

Public Works is evaluating storm debris and will specify a response later in the day, Stevens said.

More than 8,300 people were without electricity Sunday night in Edmond, Fisher said. Two substations were down due to OG&E transmission issues in the Forest Oaks addition near 15th Street and Bryant where electric poles need to be replaced.

“We did some temporary feeds into Forest Oaks to get them running,” Fisher said. “So we’ll be working on that throughout the day, trying to get that set up.”

Power was restored at 11:30 p.m. last night with most everybody’s power restored by 3:30 a.m., he said.

“We do have a few where the meter bases were pulled from the house and they’ve got to have an electrician come in and do the work before we can reconnect them,” Fisher said.

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