Dan Bruestle stands outside his destroyed home on Monday, May 26, 2008, a day after
severe weather swept through Hugo, Minn (AP).

String of Tornadoes Hits Minnesota and Iowa over Holiday Weekend

May 27, 2008 01:56 PM
by Anne Szustek
Eight people are dead from Sunday’s tornado outbreak—the latest string of deadly storms in an active 2008 tornado season.

30-Second Summary

At least three twisters touched down during an outbreak of severe weather in the upper Midwest.

Two storms tore through the northern suburbs of Minneapolis and St. Paul. Baseball-sized hailstones pelted Minneapolis’ northwestern exurbs, and a tornado in the Minneapolis suburb of Coon Rapids sent “trees toppling into houses and power lines crashing to the ground,” reported Minnesota Public Radio.

Hugo, a St. Paul suburb, was the hardest hit in the metro area. At least 50 homes were completely demolished, with another 159 sustaining at least some damage. The hiss and smell of natural gas permeated what was left of the town’s subdivisions. Two-year-old Nathaniel Prindle was found dead in his neighbor’s pool. His parents were caught under the rubble and his four-year-old sister, as of Monday, was in critical condition at a St. Paul hospital.

Northern Iowa saw a total of seven deaths from a concurrent storm system. A mile-wide tornado left the southern swath of Parkersburg in ruins, destroying a pizzeria full of customers in “about 20 seconds,” according to local residents.

The storm system is the latest in a series of fatal tornado chains across the country. In February, at least 57 were killed in the South by a string of twisters, and at least 21 died as a result of tornado activity across the country in mid-May.

Headline Links: Deadly tornadoes tear through Minnesota and Iowa

Video: Footage of tornado, rubble

Background: Active 2008 tornado season

Reactions: First response smoothes long-term recovery

Related Topics: Tornado safety

Reference: Weather patterns


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