Minneapolis tornado kills one person, rips up homes. Curfew in effect

Categories: Weather
Thumbnail image for tornado damage1.jpg
Tony Webster
The storm uprooted this massive tree in north Minneapolis.
Parts of of north Minneapolis looked like a war zone by Sunday evening after a tornado touched down inside city limits, killed one person, injured more than 30, damaged about 100 homes, and snapped trees like they were toothpicks. Power is still out in the area.

Heavy damage was also reported in St. Louis Park, Forest Lake, Fridley, the Anoka airport, and other communities around the northwest side of the metro.

WATCH: Slideshow of the damage, courtesy of City Pages readers

Minneapolis police have asked that all non-emergency personnel stay out of the North Side for now, because emergency vehicles were having problems getting through the traffic. A curfew from 9 p.m. to 6 a.m. has been set up in a four-square-mile area affected by the storm: from Penn Avenue North to I-94, and from Dowling Avenue to Plymouth Avenue. It will be in effect for three days.

Mayor R.T. Rybak viewed the mayhem from a helicopter Sunday evening, and echoed the request for gawkers to stay out of the neighborhood so that emergency workers could do their jobs.

DO NOT come to NMpls to gawk at tornado damage. 1st responders can't keep people safe when others are in way. This is important; thank you.Sun May 22 20:43:01 via web

Deeply appreciate offers of help 4noMpls. We are assessing and will b back2u when we know more. Help needed tomorrow but, more so, ongoingMon May 23 03:34:57 via Twitter for iPad

The city's Department of Health has set up an emergency shelter at the Northeast Armory, 1025 Broadway, and is calling in employees to help with staff through the night and into Monday. More than 100 people are expected there tonight, and Cub Foods has announced it's hosting a dinner for those affected.

Minneapolis public schools in the area will be open, but some other schools have announced closures Monday: Lucy Craft Laney, Cityview, Nellie Stone Johnson, Hmong International Academy, and the Plymouth Youth Center.

Minneapolis residents can call 311 for non-emergency inquiries about the storm's damage, and to report debris. about storm debris.

And if you want to donate money to help with relief efforts, call the Red Cross at (612) 460-3700.

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Roof damage minneapolis
Roof damage minneapolis

A disastrous tornado that destroyed properties,but because of this incident people with good heart comes out, and we are truly thankful for their help.


Resist the Urge


I was in route to an emergency plumbing job near 49thand Lyndale Avenue North.I94 had been shut down for weekend repairs so I took St. Anthony Park Wayto the north side. I had been on this route an hour earlier but now it waslittered with tree branches and packed with cars near the Mississippi River. I had no idea a tornado had hit minutes earlier. As Ipassed over the 37th Avenue Bridge I spotted a squad car in the Lyndaleintersection and I noticed debris scattered everywhere. The traffic was at acrawl. I just wanted to get to my job site. I turned north on Lyndale andquickly figured out that was not an option: trees, distribution poles, andwires were blocking the road way. I made a u-turn, hoping I could continue weston the 42nd Avenue North, but the traffic was at a stand still. Icould see a continuous stream of car head lights to the south on Lyndale and tothe east on the bride. I made the turn onto 42nd Avenue North.


Large tree branches, debris, and pedestrians were in the streets.It began to rain and my visibility was strained. I just wanted to get out ofthere. Through the tree branches I could a first responder’s emergency lightsand only ONE car moving to the side of the street. I pulled over as far as Icould and stopped. The first responder was stuck in the line of on-comingtraffic. It took several minutes for the squad car to move fifty feet. In themean time I could see passengers and drivers alike with their cell phones andcameras. I was embarrassed by my fellow citizens.


As I made my way west and north I was astounded at thevolume of cars pouring into the area I sought to “escape” from.


I get the human nature—to satisfy your curiosity. But toactually get up and go to the scene of other’s misfortune and to actively bepart of the problem…not the solution, ticked me off to no end. The next time,God forbid, stay away and let the first responders do their jobs.

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