State of emergency declared after massive storm tears through South Dakota
Thousands were reportedly without power as storm devastates several communities Thursday evening
RAPID CITY, S.D. (KOTA) - A state of emergency is declared in the wake of a massive storm that ripped through eastern South Dakota Thursday.
Gov. Kristi Noem issued the emergency and, according to a release from the governor’s office, ordered personnel and resources to communities hit by the damaging storm. The Department of Public Safety’s Office of Emergency Management has an emergency operations center to coordinate the response with local government authorities.
The storm stirred up a huge wall of dust, downing trees and power lines across the area.
The dust storm, called a haboob, hit Brookings while winds estimated at 100 miles an hour blew debris through the town, uprooting trees, according to a Dakota News Now report. Several semis along Interstate 90 between Brookings and Sioux Falls were also overturned.
The town of Castlewood was also hit hard with a National Weather Service confirmed tornado touching down just before 6 p.m. Thursday. No one in the town was seriously injured.
No travel advisories were issued in several communities due to downed power lines and other storm damage. Police in Sioux Falls, Watertown, Brookings, and Madison all asked residents to avoid unnecessary travel. At one point, an estimated 45,000 homes were without power.
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