OKLAHOMA CITY (NEWS1130) – Nine people have died in the Oklahoma City area after a violent burst of tornadoes and thunderstorms overnight.
Amy Elliott with the state Medical Examiner’s Office said Saturday morning that nine fatalities have been confirmed, including two children and seven adults. The previous overall total was seven deaths.
Hospital officials said at least 75 people were hurt during Friday night storms that hit at rush hour.
Weather drones designed by Oklahoma researchers now reality
Once considered the stuff of science fiction and Hollywood films, the capability to send unmanned aircraft into the guts of a dangerous storm system is becoming reality.
The drones are being designed and built at Oklahoma State University.
The Kevlar-reinforced drones would be sent into the worst storms to send back real-time data to first responders and forecasters about how fierce the storms might become – and whether they’ll form tornadoes.
Designers estimate that they could be in operation in roughly five years.
Oklahoma is the heart of Tornado Alley and since 1950 has had seven EF5 tornadoes with winds over 2320 kph. Two of those have hit the town of Moore, where 24 died in such a storm on May 20.