The National Weather Service confirmed a large and destructive twister moved over Missouri's capital city shortly before midnight Wednesday, injuring about two dozen people and leaving a path of destruction.
Warnings to Jasper and Barton Counties were sent out after the southwestern Missouri storm hit. Most of the city, including the tornado-ravaged section, sits on a bluff overlooking the south side of the Missouri River.
"It was just the eeriest sound ever, and it felt like it was taking your breath right out of you", Surprenant, 34, said. Betty Berg, 56, also was killed and her husband, Mark, was seriously injured when their mobile home was destroyed just west of the city, Lueckenhoff said.
The National Weather Service has issued a tornado watch for several Kansas counties.
The damaging storms erupted hot on the heels of a severe weather outbreak over the central United States earlier this week.
Damage is seen on a street after a tornado in Jefferson City, Missouri, U.S. May 23, 2019, in this image taken from social media.
A tornado also hit near Joplin on the eighth anniversary of the devastating twister that killed 161 people there.
Wednesday's twister, which fell on the same day as one of the most devastating tornadoes in USA history, was part of a significant storm system that has tore through the central US for the past several days.More news: 'What Happened At Liverpool Is In My Head,' Says Lionel Messi
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Significant damage was also reported in Jefferson City, and 20 people in the area were transported to hospitals to treat injuries, though officials expected that the number of injuries could go up over the course of the morning.
Violent storms tore through the central USA this week, devastating parts of Missouri and Oklahoma, which were hit by dozens of tornadoes and flooding.
However, the flooding did contribute to traffic delays Friday evening, as the normal Memorial Day weekend traffic congestion included people who slowed to look at the flooding.
Deaths from this week's storms include a 74-year-old woman found early Wednesday morning in Iowa.
Authorities urged residents of several small towns in Oklahoma and Kansas to leave their homes as rivers and streams rose.
Two barges broke loose on the river and threatened to collide with a dam, officials said, prompting calls for a mandatory evacuation in Webbers Falls.
Officials were concerned that the barges could hit the I-40 bridge over the river, Stewart said. On Facebook, Webbers Falls, Oklahoma, warned the town's 600 residents: "If the dam breaks, it will be catastrophic!"