Drumright, OK Tornado Damages, June 1974


Drumright, Okla. (AP) -- Tornadoes slashed across Oklahoma and Kansas on Saturday killing 11 persons and injuring more than 100.
The twisters struck first at Oklahoma City, and in the next six hours hopscotched northeastward to Tulsa, 100 miles away.
Meanwhile, one person was killed and a dozen injured when a tornado hit a mobile home park and a shopping center in Emporia, Kan., about 160 miles north of Tulsa.
The hardest hit town in the tornadoes paths was Drumright, Okla., a community of 3,000 persons 43 miles west of Tulsa.
Five persons wer killed in Drumright, three persons were killed in Tulsa, and 16 were injured in Oklahoma City. In addition, two persons drowned in northeastern Oklahoma in flooding caused by the storm.
Gov. DAVID HALL'S office reported the five deaths in Drumright, and the Highway Patrol and Civil Defense said more than 100 persons were injured, many of them elderly residents of the Drumright Nursing Home.
The storm hit Drumright at 5:01 p.m. CDT, striking first at a fashionable residential area and then at the nursing home.
"The hospitals are overloaded and we have a good many bleeders," said one official in Drumright.
A Creek County sheriff's spokesman said the western half of the town was "nearly wiped out."
Power was out in the town. Emergency generators, portable lights and drinking water were dispatched from Tinker Air Force Base at Oklahoma City.
Damage was estimated in the millions of dollars in Oklahoma City, Drumright and Tulsa.
The first tornado reported in Oklahoma hit the National Weather Service building at Oklahoma City's Will Rogers World Airport at 2:35 p.m. No one was injured.
But half an hour later, a twister -- possibly the same one -- struck a residential and commercial neighborhood of Oklahoma City's southwest side, four miles from the airport.

Del Rio News Herald Texas 1974-06-09