(Craighead County, AR) There’s widespread damage in the town of Caraway, Ark., after a tornado touched down Halloween night.
There were several injuries, but no one was killed.
Fortunately, most trick-or-treaters were off the streets when the twister hit around 7:30.
Friday, almost everywhere you looked in the town of Caraway, Arkansas, there was evidence of Thursday night’s damaging storm.
And there were lots of folks in Caraway believing things could have turned out much worse.
This was the second time Voader Hancock has been though a tornado.
She was glad the trick or treaters were off the streets, but the tornado still gave her the Halloween frights.
“Oh, I was really scared when it hit. It shook my house real hard. So I was really scared there for a few minutes,” said Hancock.
Halloween night turned really frightening when straight line winds hit the southwest side of town causing a large steel framed farm building to crumble and toppling trees and power lines.
But the weather monster grew more powerful as it headed toward Caraway’s business district.
Benjamin Schott, with the National Weather Service Office in Memphis, toured Caraway Friday morning.
“A tornado developed with winds in excess of and or near 90 to a hundred miles an hour. Which places it as an EF-1 tornado, said Schott.
The twister turned a festive night into a horror show for youngsters like Rebecca Thaxton.
“The wind scared me,” the youngster said.
There were a few minor injuries, but fortunately most all of the trick or treaters were off the streets when weather turned ugly.
Victoria Chamberlain had just wrapped her trick or treating and was back home.
“And then all of a sudden the sirens went off and we went into the hallway,” said Chamberlain.
The twister missed Ronnie Pentecosts’ home but not his security fence or storage building.
“About five seconds it was over. And come outside and looked and this is what I seen,” said Pentecost as her searched through the rubble.
The few moments it took for the storm to move through Caraway seemed like an eternity to Kerrie Cockrell, who ran across town to check on his mother.
“I seen the top tore off my mother’s house and the porch laying there. And they were all inside huddled up crying and screaming. But everybody was okay, nobody got hurt,” said Cockrell.
The Red Cross has opened a shelter on north New York Avenue in Caraway.
We’re told Craighead County Sheriff’s deputies will be patrolling the town to make sure no one goes into heavily damaged areas and no one tries to loot businesses.
A team from our office has rated the Caraway, Arkansas tornado an EF-1 with an estimated maximum wind speed of 90 MPH.—
NWS Memphis (@NWSMemphis) November 01, 2013