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   There were three confirmed tornado touchdowns on Wednesday night -- in Hazelwood, Florissant and Alton, Illinois.

   Missouri Governor Jay Nixon has declared a state of emergency for the St. Louis area after the tornadoes and severe thunderstorms storms caused extensive damage and wide-spread power outages.   Nixon will visit St. Louis Thursday to survey the damage with local officials.  

   The declaration allows local and state agencies to coordinate relief efforts for victims of Wednesday’s storms.

 

 
Thursday, 11 April 2013 02:25
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   Violent storms rocked the St. Louis metro area Wednesday evening, spawning tornadoes and strong winds that damaged buildings, toppled trees and downed power lines.  

   Storm damage and power outages have prompted some schools to cancel classes for Thursday.

   Shenandoah Valley Elementary School in Chesterfield has canceled class after the storm tore the roof off the building. 

   All Hazelwood Schools are closed due to power outages. There are also concerns about fallen trees and debris blocking bus routes in the district.

   Vianney High School has canceled classes over power issues as well.

   Additional school closings will be added to this list if warranted.

 
Thursday, 11 April 2013 01:47
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   Franklin County officials reported damage county-wide.  That includes widespread roof and tree damage.  Sullivan was one of the hardest hit areas in the county.   Several mobile homes were damaged at the Jergenson mobile home park.  At least 4 people were injured there, mainly broken bones.  Rescue crews have gone door to door, searching for additional victims.  The storm struck the 1st Baptist Church in Union during a church service.  Worshippers evacuated to a safe area of the church, which lost a large portion of it's roof, but no one was injured.

   The cleanup will be long and arduous in Hazelwood after a tornado reportedly touched down their during last night's storms.  Strike teams from St. Charles County were called in to assist local authorities about 8:30 p.m.  Fire crews from St. Charles and the City of St. Louis were also called in.  Ground zero was near Howdershell and Lynn Haven.  At least one person became trapped after a tornado tossed a large tree onto a home at Howdershell and Octavia.  Several buildings were damaged in that area and police have closed the roads leading into the neighborhood.  The good news:  There have been no reports of serious injuries in Hazelwood.

   Multiple Tornado Warnings were issued for St. Charles County. Projected paths included St. Peters, Cottleville, and St. Charles; 370 Park; and West Alton. Radar also indicated rotation between O’Fallon and Lake St. Louis, as well as in the area near Defiance.  Power outages are minimal in St. Charles County, but there are other problems, including road closures.  Highway 94 is blocked just east of Portage des Sioux because of downed power poles and wires.  A spokesperson for the county says they're not sure when that will be cleared.  Also there's water covering Hwy H at Hwy 94. Multiple utility lines down or arcing in Dardenne Prairie, St. Peters, O’Fallon, and unincorporated county. And lightning strikes were reported in Lake St. Louis, Dardenne Prairie, Cottleville, and unincorporated areas.

   Damage is also being reported in the Hill neighborhood of South St. Louis.  In the 5600 block of Columbia, two homes were heavily damaged.  The roof was ripped off one home and strewn across the block, causing additional damage to cars and other homes.

  

   

 

Thursday, 11 April 2013 01:29
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   Downed power lines mean the lights are out in several parts of the metro area. Ameren opened their Emergency Operations Center just after p.m. Wednesday.  Utility officials say crews will work through the night, but many residents will remain without power until at least Thursday afternoon.  Ameren will bring in additional crews Thursday morning. 

   As of 2:00 a.m, Ameren was reporting more than 30,000 Missouri customers without power - most of them in St. Louis County.  

   About 4,000 metro-east customers also remain in the dark.

   Outages can be reported here.

Wednesday, 10 April 2013 20:24
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UPDATE:

New Tornado warning issued for parts of St. Louis, St. Charles, and Madison counties

Warning below:

A TORNADO WARNING REMAINS IN EFFECT FOR NORTHEASTERN ST. LOUIS... EXTREME NORTHEASTERN ST. CHARLES AND CENTRAL MADISON COUNTIES UNTIL 830 PM CDT...

AT 805 PM CDT... A CONFIRMED TORNADO WAS LOCATED NEAR FLORISSANT... AND MOVING EAST AT 60 MPH.

HAZARD... DAMAGING TORNADO.

SOURCE... LAW ENFORCEMENT CONFIRMED TORNADO TOUCHDOWN IN HAZELWOOD.

IMPACT... MOBILE HOMES WILL BE HEAVILY DAMAGED OR DESTROYED. SIGNIFICANT DAMAGE TO ROOFS... WINDOWS AND VEHICLES WILL OCCUR. FLYING DEBRIS WILL BE DEADLY TO PEOPLE AND ANIMALS. EXTENSIVE TREE DAMAGE IS LIKELY.

LOCATIONS IMPACTED INCLUDE... BLACK JACK... SPANISH LAKE... ALTON... WOOD RIVER... BETHALTO... EDWARDSVILLE... WEST ALTON... HARTFORD... ROXANA AND POAG.

THIS WARNING INCLUDES CONFLUENCE STATE PARK.

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS...

TO REPEAT... A TORNADO IS ON THE GROUND. TAKE COVER NOW. MOVE TO AN INTERIOR ROOM ON THE LOWEST FLOOR OF A STURDY BUILDING. AVOID WINDOWS. IF IN A MOBILE HOME... A VEHICLE OR OUTDOORS... MOVE TO THE CLOSEST SUBSTANTIAL SHELTER AND PROTECT YOURSELF FROM FLYING DEBRIS.

EARLIER: 

A Tornado Warning has been issued for several counties in the listening area.

Full warning from National Weather Service is below:

... A TORNADO WARNING REMAINS IN EFFECT FOR NORTHERN ST. LOUIS... EASTERN ST. CHARLES AND NORTHEASTERN FRANKLIN COUNTIES UNTIL 800 PM CDT...

AT 737 PM CDT... A SEVERE THUNDERSTORM CAPABLE OF PRODUCING A TORNADO WAS LOCATED JUST SOUTH OF DEFIANCE ALONG THE MISSOURI RIVER... AND MOVING NORTHEAST AT 55 MPH.

HAZARD... DEVELOPING TORNADO.

SOURCE... RADAR INDICATED ROTATION. RADAR SHOWS VERY STRONG INDICATION OF TORNADO NEAR DEFIANCE.

IMPACT... MOBILE HOMES WILL BE HEAVILY DAMAGED OR DESTROYED. SIGNIFICANT DAMAGE TO ROOFS... WINDOWS AND VEHICLES WILL OCCUR. FLYING DEBRIS WILL BE DEADLY TO PEOPLE AND ANIMALS. EXTENSIVE TREE DAMAGE IS LIKELY.

LOCATIONS IMPACTED INCLUDE... WILDWOOD... ELLISVILLE... CLARKSON VALLEY... BALLWIN... WELDON SPRING... CHESTERFIELD... MANCHESTER... COTTLEVILLE... TOWN AND COUNTRY... ST. PETERS... FRONTENAC... CREVE COEUR... MARYLAND HEIGHTS... ST. CHARLES... BRIDGETON... ST. ANN... LAMBERT FIELD... WOODSON TERRACE... OVERLAND AND ST. JOHN.

THIS WARNING INCLUDES BABLER MEMORIAL STATE PARK AND FIRST MISSOURI STATE CAPITOL HISTORIC SITE.

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS...

TAKE COVER NOW. MOVE TO AN INTERIOR ROOM ON THE LOWEST FLOOR OF A STURDY BUILDING. AVOID WINDOWS. IF IN A MOBILE HOME... A VEHICLE OR OUTDOORS... MOVE TO THE CLOSEST SUBSTANTIAL SHELTER AND PROTECT YOURSELF FROM FLYING DEBRIS.

 

Wednesday, 10 April 2013 19:43
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Senator Claire McCaskill, business solutions company Intuit, and search giant Google are in St. Louis Friday, and they are all here to help area small businesses.

The Internet can be a great launching pad for businesses, but Google's Rebecca Ginsberg tells me it is vastly underutilized by business owners, "We (Google) did some research last year that while 97% of Internet users go online to look for local products and services, 64% of small businesses in Missouri still do not have a website.'

Attendees at the Get Your Business Online workshop on Friday will get a free website and hosting for one year. The event starts at 8:30 at the Third Degree Glass Factory on Delmar just north of Forest Park.

If you can't make the event, the same offer is available at MissouriGetOnline.com, or by clicking here.

 

Wednesday, 10 April 2013 17:44
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BRIDGETON, Mo. (AP) - The operators of a landfill in St. Louis County have completed a well improvement project seeking to remove odor-causing gas that has raised concerns for those who live near the facility.

Bridgeton Landfill LLC said Wednesday that it has installed 40 new wells about a week ahead of schedule. Gas will be removed through the wells, then transported to an on-site processing facility.

The landfill sits near Lambert Airport. Residents who work and live near it have complained for months about the smell and raised health concerns.

Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster late last month filed a lawsuit against the landfill operators, alleging violations of state environmental laws on the 52-acre site.

Wednesday, 10 April 2013 17:25
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Emergency workers responding to a fire alarm at Boeing Wednesday morning discovered a stash of chemicals that are used to make meth.

Berkeley police say the alarm went off around 10. Firefighters found the chemicals in the building and police removed them.

One Boeing employee is being held in connection to the incident. 

Wednesday, 10 April 2013 17:16
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The National Weather Service has issued a tornado watch for the Metro St. Louis area.

A watch indicates that conditions are favorable for the development of a tornado, but none have been spotted.

The entire statement from the weather service is below:

 

TORNADO WATCH 90 REMAINS VALID UNTIL 9 PM CDT THIS EVENING FOR THE FOLLOWING AREAS

IN ILLINOIS THIS WATCH INCLUDES 10 COUNTIES

IN SOUTH CENTRAL ILLINOIS

BOND IL CLINTON IL FAYETTE IL MARION IL MONTGOMERY IL WASHINGTON IL

IN SOUTHWEST ILLINOIS

MADISON IL MONROE IL RANDOLPH IL ST. CLAIR IL

IN MISSOURI THIS WATCH INCLUDES 11 COUNTIES

IN EAST CENTRAL MISSOURI

CRAWFORD MO FRANKLIN MO JEFFERSON MO ST. CHARLES MO ST. LOUIS MO WASHINGTON MO

IN SOUTHEAST MISSOURI

IRON MO MADISON MO REYNOLDS MO ST. FRANCOIS MO STE. GENEVIEVE MO

IN MISSOURI THIS WATCH INCLUDES 1 INDEPENDENT CITY

IN EAST CENTRAL MISSOURI

ST. LOUIS CITY MO

THIS INCLUDES THE CITIES OF... BELLEVILLE... CHESTER... EDWARDSVILLE... FARMINGTON... LITCHFIELD... SALEM... ST CHARLES... ST LOUIS... UNION AND VANDALIA.

Wednesday, 10 April 2013 15:06
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A brief scare at Scott Air Force Base this morning.

After reports of a man walking around with a gun, one building was evacuated and MP's searched the area. The all clear was given about an hour after the first report and no one was injured.

 

Wednesday, 10 April 2013 14:18
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