Two people died after an EF-3 tornado ripped through a small area of El Reno Saturday night, the El Reno mayor said Sunday.
The tornado, which happened shortly after 10:30 p.m. Saturday, was rated as an EF-3 tornado by the National Weather Service. The fatalities happened at the Skyview Mobile Home Park behind a motel which sustained significant damage.
When daylight broke, everyone was able to see how significant the damage was at the American Budget Value Inn near Highway 81 and Interstate 40. The motel had lost most of its second floor with a green dumpster found in one of the second-floor rooms.
Mayor Matt White said 16 people were taken to hospitals by paramedics and 13 others were taken to hospitals in private vehicles.
He said their conditions ranged from critical condition, with some in still in surgery, and some suffering only minor injuries.
All the guests at the American Budget Value Inn have been accounted for and are safe, White said.
The state medical examiner's office is at the scene and will notify the families.
According to News 9 Streetscope, the tornado's path was about 1.2 miles long.
At times during the news conference, the mayor became emotional and stressed how important prayers were for the community and the strength the community and first responders displayed in the last week.
Officials asked residents to call the El Reno Police Department's non-emergency line instead of calling 911 if they had questions about what was happening. The number is 405-262-6941.
Anyone who wishes to help can make donations at the VFW, 1515 South Rock Island Avenue, or make donations through a GoFundMe page.
Click here for the GoGundMe page.
Other damage was reported in Oklahoma City when another tornado dropped down about 15 minutes afterward.
So far, the Paseo Arts Festival will continue as planned after organizers are able to clean up damage from the storm.