Deadly Tornadoes Hit Oklahoma City Metro Area

Updated: A violent storm formed west of Oklahoma City late Friday afternoon and produced several tornadoes that left at least eighteen people dead, officials said. A Weather Channel employee is among the injured.

2. Update: Oklahoma Surveys Damage

Officials began Saturday to assess the damage caused by the latest deadly tornadoes to strike the Oklahoma City area in less than two weeks.

The Associated Press reported that nine people were reported killed, including a mother and baby found in a vehicle. A spokeswoman for the state medical examiner, Amy Elliott, told the AP early Saturday that she had no immediate word of additional fatalities. About 50 people were hurt, five critically, hospital officials said.

According to Oklahoma City television station, KFOR, Friday’s storm brought with severe flooding, dumping around seven inches of rain on the city. Thousands remain without power.

Must Watch Videos:

Video posted to YouTube appears to show the tornado near Union City, Oklahoma on Friday evening.

Video posted to YouTube by Reed Timmer shows a violent wedge tornado Friday near El Reno, Oklahoma.

Additional Photos:

Dangerous tornado is minutes away from Yukon, OK (@theAlexHanson)

— BuzzFeedNews (@BuzzFeed News)

What a horrifying picture of a backed up i35 with tornado in the area.

— geowx1 (@George Wetzel)

BREAKING: Arena in OKC being evacuated. Rushing to lowest level parking garages. (@WOODTV)

— weeddude (@Michael Rusch)

Update: Friday, May 31, 2013 - 8:31 p.m. ET:

11. Damage reported from tornado near Oklahoma City

The Oklahoma Highway Patrol says motorists have been hurt in a storm that hit the Oklahoma City area and that others are missing. The National Weather Service issued a tornado emergency for the city’s downtown, airport and several suburbs as the storm rolled through central Oklahoma.

Update: Friday, May 31, 2013 - 8:38 p.m. ET:

BREAKING: Tornado confirmed ENE of Moore, OK - @NEWS9

— MicahGrimes (@Micah Grimes)

Two more twisters touch down near Oklahoma City as first tornado heads toward Moore, @KFOR reports

— NBCNews (@NBC News)

Update: Friday, May 31, 2013 - 9:35 p.m. ET:

BREAKING. OK Highway Patrol spokeswoman tells @CBSNews: "it is a desperate situation" with multiple injuries, vehicles overturned on I-40.

— CharlieKayeCBS (@Charlie Kaye)

#tornado Overturned semi on I-40, just east of El Reno, Okla. Photo by Chris Machian, Omaha World-Herald

— OWHnews (@Omaha World-Herald)

PHOTO: @NewsOK Photographer, Jim Beckel, reports at least six semis overturned on I-40 west of Banner Road. #okwx

— Tiffanyg89 (@Tiffany Gibson)

Update: Friday, May 31, 2013 - 9:50 p.m. ET:

Trooper Betsy Randolph of Oklahoma Highway Patrol confirms two fatalities, a woman and her baby, on I-40 near El Reno

— NBCNews (@NBC News)

Mother and baby killed after SUV is tossed by tornado near Oklahoma City (@lancewest)

— BuzzFeedNews (@BuzzFeed News)

Update: Friday, May 31, 2013 - 10:37 p.m. ET:

Just rescued 3 people in cellar. Vehicles thrown all over. Houses destroyed! This is awful!!! El Reno got hit hard!!

— severewxupdates (@SWS- John Hallen)

Update: Friday, May 31, 2013 - 11:58 p.m. ET:

Flood waters cover a yard in SW Oklahoma City. #okcfox


Flooding at Main & Walker in OKC.

— NEWS9 (@News 9)

Flooding on N. Walker Ave. Right outside of Paseo Art District. Send your pictures to

— NEWS9 (@News 9)

Mother Nature is on my last nerve. A man stands on his car in flood waters in Oklahoma City. shipps/the oklahoman

— sarahcphipps (@Sarah Phipps)

29. Update: Weather Channel Vehicle Thrown in Storm

Mike Bettes, a meteorologist for The Weather Channel, was reported injured after the “tornado hunt” SUV that he and two photographers were riding in was thrown 200 yards by a twister in Oklahoma.

It’s the first time one of the network’s personalities has been injured while covering violent weather, spokeswoman Shirley Powell told the AP.

The @weatherchannel vehicle just got thrown by tornado. We stopped to help & they are OK. @jimcantore

— SeanSchoferTVN (@Sean Schofer)

View this embed ›

Video From Inside Tumbling TWC Vehicle

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Michael Rusch is a reporter and night editor for BuzzFeed News and is based in New York.
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