Dozens of buildings leveled after a powerful tornado tears through Wichita area
A powerful tornado tore through the Wichita, Kansas,
area Friday night, leveling dozens of structures in the city of Andover, according to officials.
The twister touched down in Sedgewick County before traveling to Andover in Butler County,
the city's fire chief Chad Russell said during a news conference.
More than 950 buildings were in the pathway of the tornado, he said.
"We had many buildings in Andover take very tough damage," Russell said, adding that some homes were "completely blown down."
The tornado was rated an EF-3 based on a preliminary damage survey from the National Weather Service in Wichita.
More details will likely emerge as the survey is completed, but an EF-3 rating would mean winds from the twister ranged between 136 and 165 mph.
The recovery will take years, Russell said. "Unfortunately, we've been through this before," he added,
alluding to the devastation caused by an F-5 tornado that struck Andover on April 26, 1991. Seventeen people died in that tornado's wake.
Although the damage was extensive Friday, only a handful of injuries were reported by authorities early Saturday.
Andover, a city of around 15,000 people, is about 14 miles east of Wichita, Kansas.
Resident Alaina Adkins told CNN that she took shelter in her neighbor's basement across the street from her apartment complex as the tornado swept by.
"I just couldn't believe. It just didn't look real,"