At least 51 people, including seven elementary school students, were killed Monday after a two-mile-wide tornado hit Oklahoma on Monday, CNN reports.
The powerful twister hit Moore, Okla. - a town outside of Oklahoma City. The seven dead children were from Plaza Towers Elementary School, which lay directly in the path of the tornado. Seventy-five students and staff members were huddled together when the storm actually hit.
As of Monday, rescue workers were still searching for survivors late into the night. A temporary flight restriction was put in effect over the school so that aircraft would stay away, allowing rescue workers and emergency officials to hear cries for help. "We're doing everything we can ... to find anyone who might be injured or might be lost," Gov. Mary Fallin said in a news conference on Monday.
Authorities had no immediate estimate on the number of people that were injured on Monday. An Oklahoma Medical Center spokesperson told CNN that were 20 patients, 12 adults and eight children, in trauma rooms with injuries ranging from minor to critical. Another nearby medical center, Moore Medical Center, was evacuated after it sustained damage from the tornado. Patients were evacuated to Normal Regional Hospital and Healthpex Hospital.
Additionally, Interstate 35 in Moore was closed due to debris from the storm. A spokesman for the state's department of transportation said crews were on their way to begin the cleanup process.
Monday's tornado came after tornadoes and powerful storms hit Oklahoma and the Midwest Sunday and earlier on Monday. Two people had already been killed. As many as 28 tornadoes were reported in Oklahoma, Kansas, Illinois and Iowa, according to the National Weather Service.
Tornado watches were in effect for parts of Kansas, Missouri Arkansas, Oklahoma and Texas until 11 p.m. ET.
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