Tornadoes touch down across U.S., killing toddler in Michigan, injuring 5 in Maryland

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Boy, 2, killed and mother injured after tree downed by twister fell on home in suburban Detroit

Posted: June 05, 2024
Last Updated: June 05, 2024

A downed tree is seen on the roof of a home in Livonia, Mich., a suburb of Detroit, in the aftermath of a quick-developing tornado that hit several neighbourhoods on Wednesday. (Robin Buckson/Detroit News/The Associated Press)

A tornado killed a two-year-old boy and injured his mother Wednesday when a tree fell on their house in suburban Detroit. Meanwhile, emergency workers in Maryland were responding to reports of collapsed structures with people trapped inside after a tornado there.

Officials in Livonia, Mich., said in
a post on the city’s website that the quick-developing tornado struck several neighbourhoods in the city on Wednesday afternoon.

A massive tree was uprooted and fell onto the family’s house and through the roof, landing on a bed where the woman and her two-year-old son were sleeping, officials said. Crews worked for nearly an hour to remove the roof and parts of the tree, then lift the tree to get the victims out.

The toddler was pronounced dead at the scene, officials said. The mother was transported to a local hospital in critical condition.

A two-week-old sibling who was in a crib in a separate room was not injured but taken to a hospital for an evaluation, Livonia Fire Department Chief Robert Jennison told WDIV-TV.

‘Our hearts are broken’

“This is a terrible tragedy for our community,” Mayor Maureen Miller Brosnan said in the statement. “Our hearts are broken, too, and we send our deepest sympathies.”

The city of Livonia activates warning sirens based on notifications from the U.S. National Weather Service or tornado reports, officials said.

A structure was damaged by trees downed during a tornado that tore through parts of Livonia, Mich., on Wednesday. (Nolan Finley/The Detroit News/The Associated Press)

However, Livonia Emergency Preparedness Director Brian Kahn said in the statement that the city did not receive any advance warning from the agency or others.

A representative from the weather service called it a spin-up storm that didn’t show up on their radars in enough time to issue a warning, according to city officials.

The National Weather Service in Detroit
confirmed on the social platform X, formerly Twitter, Wednesday night that an EF1 tornado with a peak wind speed of 153 km/h moved through Livonia.

The agency said the twister travelled a path spanning more than eight kilometres, uprooting and damaging trees and damaging some houses.

5 injured in Maryland

In Maryland, emergency workers responded to reports that people were trapped inside structures that collapsed after a tornado was spotted in the area during strong storms Wednesday night.

A tornado was spotted in a suburban area of Montgomery County northwest of Washington, D.C., the National Weather Service said in a social media post warning people in the area to take cover.

There were reports of three collapsed structures in Gaithersburg with people trapped inside, Montgomery County Fire and Rescue Service spokesperson Pete Piringer said.

Piringer said the most significant damage occurred when a large tree fell on a single-family house, leaving five people injured, including one with traumatic injuries.

He said they were all taken to a hospital.


A previous version of this story stated the name of the Livonia fire chief as Robert Johnson. In fact, his name is Robert Jennison.
June 05, 2024 23:27:41 PM ET

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Publish date : 2024-06-05 23:09:00

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