JEFFERSON CITY – Missouri Gov. Mike Parson is activating the state National Guard to help battle ongoing flooding.
Parson signed an executive order Monday directing National Guard members to help with response efforts in Jefferson City, where residents are still recovering from a tornado that struck last week.
The National Guard is also headed to Chariton County to sandbag around a stressed levee near the central Missouri city of Brunswick.
Parson says local resources were already strained following historic flooding this spring, as well as severe storms and tornadoes that hit the state last week.
More could be in store. Parson is urging residents to watch the weather and be prepared to seek shelter. The National Weather Service says more thunderstorms are likely today and Wednesday.
The Weather Service has confirmed three small tornadoes – all rated at EF-0, meaning winds of up to 85 mph – Friday night. One was near Longview Lake, a second was near Lake Lotawana, and the third was north of the Johnson County-Lafayette County line. All caused what the Weather Service called minor tree damage.
The Weather Service also notes that the 11.25 inches of rain recorded so far this month at Kansas City International Airport is already the eight-wettest month in Kansas City in more than 125 years of record keeping. May 1995 is the wettest May on record – 12.75 inches – and No. 3 overall. The wettest month ever record in Kansas City is September 1914, with 16.17.
Severe weather has continued to hammer the middle of the country.
The National Weather Service says a tornado touched down in the Tulsa area early Sunday, damaging structures, uprooting trees and toppling power lines. The Weather Service said the area also experienced damage from straight-line winds that officials say exceeded 80 mph.
The tornado was spawned by a powerful storm system that rolled through the state and occurred not long after another tornado killed two people and injured 29 others in El Reno, about 25 miles west of Oklahoma City.
El Reno Mayor Matt White said 29 people were taken to hospitals with injuries ranging from minor to critical. The weather service gave the twister a preliminary rating of EF-2, which would mean it had wind speeds of 111-135 mph.