A tornado has swept through the U.S. state of Michigan, killing at least one person and injuring more than 40 others. Videos shared online show extensive damage to the town of Gelard in Otsego County as cars overturned and power lines were cut off.
Officials have confirmed that one person was killed and more than 40 were injured, CNN reported. The injured are being treated at hospitals in different areas.
The tornado hit the area on Friday afternoon (local time) and moved quickly, damaging buildings and other structures en route, the report added.
A video shared on Twitter shows the tornado passing through the area, uprooting everything in its path and even causing a fire. People were seen stopping their vehicles and running for shelter.
Gaylord, Michigan took a direct hit from one # Tornado Exactly 4 pm EDT this afternoon. There were reports of significant damage to buildings and injuries. We’ll keep you updated as we learn more. #miwx Video: Kyle Pierce – LSM pic.twitter.com/Qfr7mMyUbC
– WeatherNation (WeatherNation) May 20, 2022
Another video captured from inside a car shows the tornado dangerously approaching the car. Sharing the video, a meteorologist said the tornado hit the city at about 55 mph at 3:50 pm local time and “multiple reports of substantial damage”.
Too close for this comfort! Pass off # Gelard Tornado From Matt McClane.
– Ellen Bacca (@ EllenBaka) May 20, 2022
Michigan State Police said several homes and businesses were damaged. The department has asked people to avoid the area as power lines are blocking roads. Thousands of people in northern Michigan are still without electricity.
Trees and power lines are blocking the road. Multiple homes and businesses were damaged. Avoid the Gaylord area. Emergency workers are responding. pic.twitter.com/s7mL0L9hHY
– SMSPNesternMI (@mspnesternmi) May 20, 2022
After the devastation, Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer said he had declared a state of emergency for Otsego County. “The Michigans are tough. We are resilient. We will do whatever it takes to rebuild. There are no challenges that we cannot overcome together, “he added.
Following the tornado in Gelard, I declared a state of emergency for Otsego County.
The Michigans are tough. We are resilient. We will do whatever it takes to rebuild. There is no challenge that we cannot overcome together. pic.twitter.com/ulOp2GgZfc
– Governor Gretchen Whitmer (GovWhitmer) May 21, 2022
According to the state website, Michigan sees an average of only 15 tornadoes per year. The website, however, warns that tornadoes develop very quickly, with slightly improved warnings. The average lead time for a tornado alert is 10-15 minutes.