Chilling Videos Show Utter Devastation After Deadly Iowa Tornado
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Chilling Videos Show Utter Devastation After Deadly Iowa Tornado

Video shows the deadly tornado developing by farmland and then the destructive aftermath of it ripping through Greenfield, Iowa.

Iowa's governor issued a state of emergency after storms and tornadoes ripped through 15 counties this week, leaving an unknown number of people dead as well as homes and other property destroyed.

Gov. Kim Reynolds said in a statement that officials are still assessing the damage as first responders aid the injured and utility crews try to restore power to thousands. "It was just a few weeks ago that tornadoes hit several other Iowa communities, and it's hard to believe that it's happened again," Reynolds said. "Iowans are strong and resilient, and we will get through this together."

Videos show the utter destruction of entire neighborhoods in Greenfield, Iowa, a town of about 2,000 people and roughly 60 miles west of Des Moines. According to reports, the twister ripped through the town from one end to the other before moving eastward toward Illinois and Wisconsin and then dying down.

Footage Shows Destruction Of Tornado

A drone video collected by storm chaser Reed Timmer shows a tornado developing in farmland near Greenfield and then go on to destroy wind turbines. He described it as "up-close helical suction vortex action" and "the most incredible tornado footage ever captured by a drone."

The Associated Press reported that it has been a historically bad tornado season in the U.S. as April had the second-highest number of tornadoes ever recorded. According to reports, there have been 27% more tornadoes than average, with some 859 so far this year. Nearly 700 of them happened in April and May.

Monitoring the radar, Jonathan Erdman, a senior meteorologist with the Weather Channel, said on Twitter that Greenfield had a 46-minute lead time before the tornado struck. The town received a warning at 2:55 p.m. central time and then it hit at 3:41 p.m. Erdman added that he thinks the tornado would have killed more people without the warning.

Iowa state Rep. Ray Sorensen, whose district includes Greenfield, talked to reporters on Wednesday, saying that he had received messages about the tornado at about 3 p.m and rushed to the town. After seeing the destruction, he called Greenfield "a completely different town now."

He explained that during his visit everybody became a first responder. "We pulled a guy from the rubble and put him on a little makeshift stretcher that we made, threw him in the back of a truck of a guy that isn't even from Iowa and we just made our way to the lumber yard, which was the makeshift hospital."

Experts say tornados only touched down in three states — Iowa, Illinois, and Wisconsin. But the storms were felt across the country, in states ranging from Texas to New York.