Northern Michigan tornado death toll rises to two


A second person died. Tornado hits northern MichiganAuthorities reported on Saturday as crew members searched a mobile home park that was virtually destroyed by rare weather events.

The 70-year-old lived in Nottingham Mobile Home Park, one of the first areas affected by the tornadoes on Friday, said State Police Lieutenant Derrick Carroll.

Otsego County Fire Chief Chris Martin said, “The trailers were picked up and overturned on top of each other. It’s just a very large field of rubble.” “Right now, the crew is conducting a secondary search with heavy equipment.”

“Probably 95% of it will be destroyed,” he said.

Tornado - Michigan
This image furnished by Steven Bischer shows the damage from a tornado in Gaylord, Michigan, on Friday, May 20, 2022. (Steven Bischer, AP)

Stephen Bischer / AP


The tornado struck Gayroad, a city of about 4,200 people, about 230 miles northwest of Detroit.

More than 40 people were injured.

Governor Gretchen Whitmer has declared a state of emergency for the county, freeing up more state resources.

Gaylord Police Chief Frank Claeys said the moments right after the tornado were difficult for first responders.

“We were looking for a place to know the residents. We were calling their names,” Claeys said. “It’s a lot more personal when our officers get to know the people who live in that house.”

Tornado - Michigan
This image furnished by Steven Bischer shows a vehicle overturned after an apparent tornado in Gaylord, Michigan, on Friday, May 20, 2022. (Steven Bischer, AP)

Stephen Bischer / AP


Jim Keysor, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service based in Gaylord, said extreme spring winds are uncommon in the region because the Great Lakes suck energy from storms.

“Many children and young adults would not have experienced direct bad weather had they lived in Gaylord their entire lives,” he said.

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