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Tornado: Moore residents return to their homes

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Tornado: Moore residents return to their homes



"I was lucky, at least, my walls are still standing," sighs Binh From picking up some business in the rubble of his house: Wednesday, Moore's residents have returned to their homes in a city ravaged by tornado that killed 24 people on Monday.

afp.com/Joshua Lott



"I was lucky, at least, my walls are still standing," sighs Binh From picking up some business in the rubble of his house: Wednesday, Moore's residents have returned to their homes in a city ravaged by tornado that killed 24 people on Monday.

Advancing cautiously in ruins, Binh Du, 33, was able to recover with a friend hifi, bicycle tires, a traditional Chinese instrument. "The people of Oklahoma experiencing adversity, but they want to overcome it. I would not say they are fatalistic," the young man, one of the 55,000 inhabitants of Moore, a suburb of Oklahoma City, southern United States devastated by the tornado that killed 24 people, including 10 children. Two babies aged between four and seven months have been killed in the disaster.

The city, located in a State in the heart of "tornado alley", which refers to the great plains of the United States of the center where these phenomena are particularly common, had been ravaged by a hurricane in 1999, which had then forty of deaths. Nearly 75% of tornadoes in the world occur in the United States.

Barack Obama will travel to the scene Sunday

Sunday, Barack Obama will travel to the scene to see the extent of damage. He will meet with "families who were affected and (thank) the members of the emergency services," said Wednesday his spokesman Jay Carney.

Minister of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano came on site Wednesday, meanwhile assured at a press conference that the aid would remain until the reconstruction of the affected areas, and that priority was to "remove debris "and" open roads and streets "to traffic. "At one point the cameras go from (...) but on behalf of President Obama and FEMA (the agency that handles emergencies, ed) we will stay there until the end of reconstruction" she promised.

The Senate of Oklahoma for his part said in a statement voting allocating 45 million dollars in aid. But the cost of the damage could exceed that of the tornado of 1999, which reached $ 1 billion, according to the upper chamber. Access to the city since Monday banned in certain areas deemed too dangerous by the authorities, was gradually reopened Wednesday to the inhabitants of the city.

Running water has returned to most homes

With her sister and a friend, Repreza Gerson, a student of 19, helps her mother Rosa looking family photo in the debris of their home. "There are a lot of things that were in the kitchen, but almost everything else has been destroyed," said he.

Running water was back on Wednesday in most homes, according to local authorities and there were only a few dozen people in the shelters of the American Red Cross, located in the outskirts of Oklahoma City. Moore Public Schools were closed until the end of the school year, but the reviews were maintained. Two of them were completely destroyed by the storm, which lasted about 40 minutes with winds gusting up to more than 320 km / h.

The two schools destroyed devoid of safe rooms

Rescue teams continued to search the rubble of collapsed Wednesday buildings with the help of specialized dogs. Winds moved Wednesday to the northeast, less strong than during the tornado, which was re-evaluated in the most powerful category. This means that the winds that ripped homes from their foundations and propelled debris 160 km have been "spiked 321 km / h," he told AFP Kelly Pirtle, service national weather.

The devastating tornadoes are not uncommon in this region, and the best way to protect yourself is to quickly access a secure room, usually underground. The two schools destroyed, reported the media, lacked.

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