One Person Killed As Storms Roar Through Missouri, Kansas

Wednesday, February 29th 2012, 8:36 am
By: News 9

A line of severe storms swept through Missouri and Kansas late Tuesday night, leaving one person dead and injuring dozens of others.

The fatality occurred in Buffalo, Missouri, when a possible tornado tore through a trailer park. Rescuers spent hours pulling survivors from damaged or destroyed mobile homes.

The popular tourist town of Branson was also hit hard. Taney County Sheriff Jimmie Russel said several people were injured. He said searchers are going house to house looking for survivors who may be trapped.

Skaggs Hospital in Branson says so far, the hospital has treated 28 people following the storm.  Michelle LeRoux with the hospital says most of the injuries have been minor to moderate, mostly cuts and abrasions.

The apparent tornado moved through downtown Branson, heavily damaging the city's famous theaters. The Walmart on Highway 76, a Taco Bell, the Blue Bayou motel, the Branson Americana Theater and Dick Clark Theater all sustained damage. 

Branson city officials say the damage is widespread. 

"There is a lot of visible damage to some buildings on Highway 76. A lot of our hotels and theatres have some marquee damage some experienced some roof damage. There are some neighborhoods who have a lot of trees that have come down. A lot of power loss in the area," Branson Communications Director Garrett Anderson said.

Two shelters have been set up.  One is for Branson residents and the other is for tourists and visitors. 

In Kansas, Gov. Sam Brownback declared a state of emergency after what was likely a tornado struck the small town of Harveyville.