Mar 31, 2022 - News

How to get help after a reported tornado hits Northwest Arkansas

A worker looks at damage from the tornado

A worker cleans up damage at George Elementary in Springdale Wednesday afternoon. Photo: Worth Sparkman/Axios

Springdale Mayor Doug Sprouse declared an emergency after a reported tornado caused property damage and sent seven people to the hospital Wednesday morning.

State of play: No fatalities have been reported, and Sprouse said in a statement to those signed up for news alerts from the mayor's office that no one appears to be missing after first responders conducted door-to-door searches.

  • However, two of the seven hospitalized were in critical condition as of Wednesday afternoon.
  • Springdale School District did not have classes Wednesday. The gym at George Elementary School was destroyed, and the kitchen and cafeteria were severely damaged, the district said in a Facebook post. Springdale did resume classes on Thursday.
Damaged playground equipment
Damaged playground equipment at George Elementary School. Photo: Worth Sparkman/Axios

What happened: Joe Sellers, a meteorologist at the National Weather Service in Tulsa, told Axios around noon on Wednesday that the agency had not officially confirmed a tornado but was pretty certain a tornado started early Wednesday morning in the north Fayetteville/Johnson area and went through Springdale.

  • The weather service issued a preliminary report late Wednesday night calling the storm an EF-3 tornado. The Enhanced Fujita (EF) rating rates severity on a scale of 0 to 5, with 5 being the most severe.

How you can help and get help: The city recommended in a statement on Facebook that nonperishable food, clothing and other donations be taken to The Compassion Center at 3157 W. Sunset Ave. in Springdale.

  • Individuals, churches, businesses and nonprofit organizations are offering meals at the Springdale Parks and Recreation Center, 1906 Cambridge St., which has been set up as a temporary response center for those in need as well as a command center for first responders.
  • The Northwest Arkansas Food Bank has sent emergency boxes to the Treehouse Pantry, which is operated by the Springdale School District, and offered emergency boxes to anyone at the Jones Center Emergency Shelter, spokesperson Julie Damer told Axios.
  • Springdale School District posted on Facebook it will accept monetary donations, which you can make by calling the district at 479-750-8800. To donate food or items, take them to Treehouse Pantry at 802 W. Allen Ave.

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