NWS Preliminary Assessment Shows Taopi Hit by EF2 Twister
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Taopi, MN (KROC-AM News) - The National Weather Service says it appears an EF2 tornado was responsible for the severe damage in a small Mower County town last night.
A team of meteorologists is still assessing the wreckage left by the storm system, but the federal agency is indicating the preliminary assessment suggests it was a tornado with winds between 110 and 135 mph that smashed through the community along Highway 56 between Adams and LeRoy about 30 miles south of Rochester.
Images of the damage in the town of fewer than 100 residents show it is widespread and devastating. Some homes and buildings have been completely destroyed and others have heavy damage that could be severe enough to force their demolition. Reports indicate at least 2 people are being treated for non-life threatening injuries suffered during the storm.
Highway 56 has been barricaded to prevent traffic from moving through Taopi and the More County Sheriff's Office is urging everyone to stay away and avoid interfering with emergency responders, utility crews, and others rendering assistance to residents of the small community.