Local

5 Tornadoes Leave Path Of Destruction In Southeast Colorado

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(credit: CBS)

(credit: CBS)

CHIVINGTON, Colo. (CBS4/AP) – Five tornadoes ripped through southeastern Colorado, leaving several communities to clean up in the aftermath of the unexpected twisters.

Authorities say at least seven homes and a hog farm were destroyed after rare nighttime tornadoes ripped through sparsely populated counties on the southeastern Colorado plains.

No deaths have been reported, only minor injuries.

Authorities say the twisters were reported early Friday in Prowers, Kiowa and Bent counties, where the homes were destroyed.

Preliminary findings show that the strength of the tornadoes are rated EF1 to EF 2 on the Enhanced Fujita Scale. Which are moderate to severe tornadoes with winds possible ranging from 73 to 112 mph with the EF1 and 113 to 157 mph with an EF2.

The Enhanced Fujita Scale is a way to measure the size and strength of a tornado by the damage it causes. You can learn more at http://www.spc.noaa.gov/faq/tornado/ef-scale.html.

State emergency management division spokeswoman Micki Trost said the hog farm that was destroyed was in Prowers County.

The winds were strong enough to blow over a semi truck and a massive cell and radio tower.

Hundreds of residents remained in the dark Friday evening. A large power substation was knocked out of power south of Lamar.

The entire town of Lamar was still without power. Power was restored to communities east of Eads.

PHOTO GALLERY: Suspected Tornadoes Strike SE Colorado

Officials with the Colorado Department of Transportation said on Friday morning that gas was not available at gas stations in the affected areas due to the power issues.

There were also some reports that tornado sirens in the area didn’t go off due to power outages.

Overnight tornadoes are rare in Colorado, where cooler nighttime temperatures usually don’t create severe weather.

(TM and © Copyright 2012 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2012 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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