April 30th, 2010
10:10 PM ET

Death toll lowered in Arkansas storms

The death toll from severe storms in northern Arkansas has been lowered to one person, emergency officials said early Saturday.

Officials had initially said three people had been killed when the storm and three possible tornadoes walloped Van Buren County on Friday.

The number of injuries in the county was also less than previously reported, said Rene Preslar, a spokeswoman for the Arkansas Department of Emergency Management.

There were 10 people injured in the county instead of the 25 previously reported, Preslar said.

"We are still looking at a number of damages, but fortunately the human impact is lower than previously thought."

Twenty-three people were injured statewide, Preslar said.

Kenny Dunham, a spokesman for the sheriff's office, said there were reports of severe damage in the west central part of the county, about 75 miles north of Little Rock.

Three homes have been destroyed in Shady Grove, Arkansas, the Arkansas Department of Emergency Management said.

The National Weather Service has issued a tornado watch for central and eastern Arkansas - along with parts of Missouri, Oklahoma and Texas, until 4 a.m. CT Saturday. In addition to tornadoes, the National Weather Service warned of hail up to 2.5 inches in diameter, thunderstorm wind gusts of up to 70 miles per hour and dangerous lighting.

Many roads in Van Buren County are blocked and authorities have closed some highways to prevent people from trying to access affected areas, Dunham said.

The storms prompted the Little Rock National Airport to cease operations Friday night, spokesman TJ Williams said.

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Filed under: U.S. • Uncategorized • Weather
soundoff (140 Responses)
  1. MIKE

    wow so sad

    April 30, 2010 at 10:24 pm | Report abuse |

    We live in Jonesboro, Arkansas and these storms are headed our way in the next hour or two. We are hoping to dodge a bullet, but it looks very scary right now.

    April 30, 2010 at 10:29 pm | Report abuse |
  3. LIBBY

    wow this is so tragic

    April 30, 2010 at 10:31 pm | Report abuse |
  4. LIAM

    wow so hamburger

    April 30, 2010 at 10:33 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Erin

    I'm in Paragould, Arkansas, and am preparing to be hit with storms soon. My mom lives near Mountain Home in north central Arkansas. She says they're all okay right now, thank God. Keep everyone in the line of these storms in your prayers.

    April 30, 2010 at 10:36 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Will

    They could have at least said where!!!!

    April 30, 2010 at 10:37 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Pittsburgh Weather Girl

    So sad that with the advanced warning we have people still die.

    April 30, 2010 at 10:39 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Abby

    Our thoughts and prayers are with them.

    April 30, 2010 at 10:40 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Katie

    "Northern Arkansas" is pretty vague. Where exactly? My family is in Northwest Arkansas, and I want to ensure they're ok.

    April 30, 2010 at 10:41 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Abby

    This was in Van Buren County area.

    April 30, 2010 at 10:42 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Earthling

    i know a few people in the pine bluff area... I pray for their safety as well as for everybody involved with and going through these storms.

    April 30, 2010 at 10:44 pm | Report abuse |
  12. sheila

    Me and my kids are in Conway Arkansas and its just now starting to rain I pray that we don't get hit with a tornado.

    April 30, 2010 at 10:44 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Melisa

    The whole state of Arkansas needs your prayers we are getting pounded by storms!!

    April 30, 2010 at 10:48 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Robert

    I have a very dear friend in northern Arkansas who I can't reach by phone right now. I can understand they might not have names of all the victims, but I agree, Will, they might at least give a little more information about the location of the deaths and serious injuries.

    April 30, 2010 at 10:48 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Matt

    The deaths are in the town of Scotland. There are about 25 serious injuries there too.

    April 30, 2010 at 10:56 pm | Report abuse |
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