Route 66 News

Tornado kills at least one in Quapaw, Baxter Springs

A tornado has killed at least two people one person and destroyed a fire station in the Route 66 town of Quapaw, Okla., near the Kansas border, according to the Tulsa World and other media outlets. One media outlet also reported a death in the nearby Route 66 town of Baxter Springs, Kan.

The twister hit the town of about 900 people about 5:30 p.m. today. The Cherokee County News-Advocate in nearby Kansas reports that roads leading to Quapaw are blocked by police. The newspaper said the town’s police station was heavily damaged as well and that the tornado went through the center of town.

The Joplin Globe reported the twister also caused “significant” damage to another Route 66 town, Baxter Springs, Kan., according to former city council member Gary Allen.

The Globe also posted a photo of the twister from a reader.

Andrea Hicks uploaded her son’s video of the tornado from nearby Galena, Kan. Caution: The clip contains adult language:

Severe storms had been forecast in Oklahoma, Kansas and Missouri for much of the weekend. Quapaw sits just a few miles from where a deadly tornado struck Picher, Okla., in 2008 and Joplin, Mo., in 2011.

We’ll post more information here as we get it.

UPDATE: The Tulsa World has posted a few photos from the scene in Quapaw.

UPDATE 4/28/2014: The Ottawa County Sheriff’s Department lowered the death toll in Quapaw to one after initially reporting two deaths Sunday evening.

The Red Cross of Eastern Oklahoma has been providing relief to residents whose homes were damaged or destroyed. The Cherokee County News-Advocate reported in Baxter Springs one death, 25 injured, up to 70 homes destroyed and about 25 businesses destroyed.

The Joplin Globe reported that at least six people were hurt in Quapaw from the storm. According to several reports, the tornado that struck the town came with no warning. It remained uncertain whether the fatality in Quapaw was a local resident; he or she was in car when the twister struck.

A Kansas City television station filed this report Monday morning:

A station in northwest Arkansas also filed this report Monday from Quapaw:

UPDATE: A reader sent this before-and-after look of Quapaw:


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