SUBSCRIBE to Capitol Fax      Advertise Here      Mobile Version     Exclusive Subscriber Content     Updated Posts    Contact
CapitolFax.com
To subscribe to Capitol Fax, click here.
*** UPDATED x2 - Death toll rises *** Harrisburg hit hard by killer storm

Wednesday, Feb 29, 2012

* My photojournalist brother Devin is on his way to Harrisburg as I write this, so we may have more pics soon. But it looks bad

A hospital administrator in the southern Illinois city of Harrisburg says at least three people were killed in a severe storm that swept through the region.

Harrisburg Medical Center CEO Vince Ashley says the three victims were pronounced dead on arrival at that hospital in Saline County after the storm hit at about 5 a.m. Wednesday.

He couldn’t immediately say how many other victims were being treated at the hospital. He says the hospital itself also sustained some damage in the storm that knocked out the 78-bed site’s heating and cooling system. Ashley says no one at the hospital was injured.

* By the looks of this video from local TV, at least part of Harrisburg appears to have been flattened. Buildings are gone, roads are indiscernible and stuff is just scattered everywhere .

* A friend forwarded some recent photos from Harrisburg…

* This is what’s left of St. Joseph’s Church…

*** UPDATE - 9:26 am *** I just spoke with Rep. Brandon Phelps who was heartbroken to discover minutes ago that the granddaughter of his district office employee was found dead this morning. Phelps is on his way to Harrisburg now and said he’s had reports of people missing and trapped in debris. The SJ-R is reporting that Springfield firefighters are heading south to help.

…Adding… I’m told this is what’s left of the apartment building where that young woman lived. Apparently, several residents were killed or injured…

*** UPDATE 2 - 9:43 am *** The Harrisburg death toll has reportedly risen to 10 [UPDATE: The death toll has been revised downward to 6.] Let’s plug in a new ScribbleLive feed. Blackberry users click here

- Posted by Rich Miller        


36 Comments
  1. - Irish - Wednesday, Feb 29, 12 @ 9:23 am:

    Our thoughts and prayers are with those folks. I hope they had sufficient warning. That’s a tough time of day for a storm like this.


  2. - HoosierDaddy - Wednesday, Feb 29, 12 @ 9:31 am:

    That looks just awful, Rich. Pray for the people in Harrisburg. I lived through a tornado when I was a kid, and I never hope to see one again if I live to be a hundred.


  3. - John A Logan - Wednesday, Feb 29, 12 @ 9:31 am:

    Tragic.


  4. - Aldyth - Wednesday, Feb 29, 12 @ 9:36 am:

    A donation has just been sent to the Red Cross, targeted for use in Harrisburg.


  5. - SO IL M - Wednesday, Feb 29, 12 @ 9:40 am:

    Have been following the live reports on WSIL TV. Southern area of Harrisburg devastated. My thoughts and prayers to the families there.
    Other areas reporting major damage: Mounds, Wolf Lake, Marion, Lake of Egypt, Creal Springs, and Ridgway. But nothing to the extent of Harrisburg.


  6. - Way Way Down Here - Wednesday, Feb 29, 12 @ 9:41 am:

    ===I hope they had sufficient warning.===

    Locals report sirens sounded throughout the area moments before the storm hit.


  7. - SO IL M - Wednesday, Feb 29, 12 @ 9:42 am:

    The pic you have posted of St. Joseph’s Catholic Church is in Ridgeway.
    Latest update is over 100 injured and 200-300 homes destroyed in Harrisburg.


  8. - Old Shepherd - Wednesday, Feb 29, 12 @ 9:43 am:

    Local news just reported 10 confirmed deaths in Harrisburg.


  9. - Concerned Observer - Wednesday, Feb 29, 12 @ 9:46 am:

    Thoughts and prayers to Harrisburg, Eldorado, the whole area. Judging by the video, the devastation looks…well, devastating.


  10. - Concerned Observer - Wednesday, Feb 29, 12 @ 9:50 am:

    Just heard Saline County Sheriff confirming 10 dead, 100 injured.


  11. - Boone Logan Square - Wednesday, Feb 29, 12 @ 9:52 am:

    Just awful.

    http://www.redcross.org/donate/donate.html


  12. - Karen Wms - Wednesday, Feb 29, 12 @ 9:52 am:

    My parents were married at St Joseph’s Church in Ridgway over 50 years ago. I’m still waiting to hear from family members there. No word yet. Just praying all are okay.


  13. - SO IL M - Wednesday, Feb 29, 12 @ 9:59 am:

    Karen–
    WSIL reporting according to Gallatin County reporting only a few minor injuries. Hope your family came thru fine.


  14. - 3rd Generation Chicago Native - Wednesday, Feb 29, 12 @ 10:01 am:

    Thanks for sharing this, and all the pictures. This devastation is not on any Chicago News.


  15. - Karen Wms - Wednesday, Feb 29, 12 @ 10:01 am:

    Thanks for the update.


  16. - TCB - Wednesday, Feb 29, 12 @ 10:05 am:

    I have family scattered all over Johnson County, hopefully that area was spared…I’ll have to call a bunch of people now & make sure. I do know that last night one of my cousins posted on FaceBook that she was pretty worried about the storm that was coming.


  17. - SO IL M - Wednesday, Feb 29, 12 @ 10:10 am:

    wsiltv.com and wsil page on facebook really the most reliable updates as of now.


  18. - Deep South - Wednesday, Feb 29, 12 @ 10:13 am:

    Reports now of 10 fatalities in Harrisburg. 100s injured. Property damage is high.


  19. - TCB - Wednesday, Feb 29, 12 @ 10:14 am:

    All of my family is accounted for. Luckily, the major storms passed just north of them.


  20. - soccermom - Wednesday, Feb 29, 12 @ 10:21 am:

    So frustrating — our IT system won’t let me see Gatehouse pages because they have so much ad content. Grrr.


  21. - Karen Wms - Wednesday, Feb 29, 12 @ 10:30 am:

    All accounted for and no injuries! Lots of property damage though including one cousin’s house and another cousin’s tavern in Ridgway.


  22. - Stones - Wednesday, Feb 29, 12 @ 10:34 am:

    Devastating photos. Thoughts and prayers go out to the victims and their families.


  23. - Mark - Wednesday, Feb 29, 12 @ 10:45 am:

    terrible tragedy–prayers to all


  24. - amalia - Wednesday, Feb 29, 12 @ 10:46 am:

    prayers for the people of Harrisburg. condolences to the families and friends of the departed and injured. thanks to you for posting this, Rich, as there is very little Chicago coverage of the terrible tragedy. the photos are terrifying. this season is purported to be a big one for tornados. hoping the warnings can come earlier because as much as we think that they do come early, it seems they don’t come early enough. tragic.


  25. - mark walker - Wednesday, Feb 29, 12 @ 10:50 am:

    Good Lord, that’s an awful storm. I cannot believe it didn’t involve a major tornado. I am so sorry for those killed and injured.


  26. - LN - Wednesday, Feb 29, 12 @ 10:51 am:

    I agree with your brother Rich, this is by FAR one of the worst storms we’ve seen down here. In comparison to the May 8th storm a few years ago, the severity of the damage and the number of injuries/fatalities far surpasses what we saw then. This looks like Joplin, MO footage.


  27. - Scott217 - Wednesday, Feb 29, 12 @ 10:58 am:

    My father-in-law lives there. He spoke to my wife around 7; he’s unhurt, and his house wasn’t hit. He said the place was a mess (as we’re now seeing).


  28. - Jake From Elwood - Wednesday, Feb 29, 12 @ 10:59 am:

    Awful outcome. Thanks for the information.


  29. - Cal Skinner - Wednesday, Feb 29, 12 @ 11:47 am:

    Since it was night, it is unlikely that any little kids saw “butterfly people carrying people in the sky,” as they did in Joplin:

    http://mchenrycountyblog.com/2011/06/22/a-letter-from-joplin-%E2%80%93-part-6-%E2%80%93-the-butterfly-people/


  30. - 47th Ward - Wednesday, Feb 29, 12 @ 11:51 am:

    Thanks for the coverage Rich. My prayers are with the people of Harrisburg and vicinity, as well as with those responding to this emergency. God help them all.


  31. - Mouthy - Wednesday, Feb 29, 12 @ 12:25 pm:

    In spite of all the damage we were lucky 6 years and 12 days ago.


  32. - mokenavince - Wednesday, Feb 29, 12 @ 1:00 pm:

    Thanks Rich,these people have real problems. May God help them, we should all donate something to
    help these folks.Please recommend where we can send donations to.


  33. - Earl - Wednesday, Feb 29, 12 @ 1:49 pm:

    Your coverage is as good as our local media-maybe better because of the distance and wider view.Thanks.And thanks for commenter’s words of encouragement.


  34. - Peggy R/Southern - Wednesday, Feb 29, 12 @ 2:02 pm:

    Prayers for those suffering and may the deceased rest in peace.


  35. - Cheryl44 - Wednesday, Feb 29, 12 @ 3:22 pm:

    It’s good to see Kirk’s staff is not sitting around wondering what to do.

    You can donate here and tell them where to send it: http://www.redcross.org/donate/donate.html


  36. - Jak Tichenor - Wednesday, Feb 29, 12 @ 5:59 pm:

    Just got back from Harrisburg a few minutes ago. It’s a terrible mess on the city’s south-side. The storm tore a 200-yard path through residential neighborhoods and a strip-shopping center just before 5:00 this morning. The shopping center was leveled like many of the houses nearby. The sirens sounded but I’m afraid a lot of folks were still caught by surprise in the dark and had no safe place to go. Incredible, heart-breaking scenes of destruction for blocks on end. I’ve seen these things before, but I am stunned by the ferocity of the winds and how utterly complete the destruction is in some places. Some of the houses I saw were just pulverized and their contents were strewn everywhere. NWS initial estimates say it was an EF-4 with winds of 170-mph. The effort by first-responders from neighboring towns and cities has been terrific. There were dozens of ambulances and emergency vehicles from 30-to-60-miles away. Very heartening to see how people are pitching in everywhere to help their neighbors and friends. Red Cross and other relief agencies are on the scene offering assistance. Gov. Quinn signed a state disaster declaration in Harrisburg this afternoon and has been in contact with the White House since this morning. We’ll have to wait until a more complete damage assessment is done before we’ll know if there will be a federal disaster declaration.

    This was a bad one, folks. Please keep these people in your thoughts and prayers tonight.

    P.S. to Rich, Devin was one of the first people I ran into over there this morning.


Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.


* IDPH wants to ban beer garden smoking
* Yes, it's quite a paradise
* *** UPDATED x2 *** What do Sha-Na-Na, Bill Enyart and pies have in common?
* Rauner endorsed by several black ministers
* Question of the day
* A quick run-through of the down-ballot statewide polling
* Poll: A three-point spread
* A bit petty, no?
* Trouble in paradise?
* Durbin sides with Holland against Quinn
* Nursing home bankruptcy trial gets underway
* SUBSCRIBERS ONLY - Political events calendar
* Davis' poll shows him leading big
* Rauner on patronage: Zero if elected
* You're gonna need a bigger boat, Bruce
* SUBSCRIBERS ONLY - Supplement to today’s edition: Crosstabs, mail, TV buys
* SUBSCRIBERS ONLY - Today's edition of Capitol Fax (use all CAPS in password)
* *** UPDATED x1 - Frerichs response *** Former Democratic state treasurer endorses Cross - Cites bipartisanship, Israel bonds as reasons (COMMENTS OPENED)
* Prison reform group responds to new Rauner ad (COMMENTS OPENED)
* Quinn hit on botched early prisoner release program (COMMENTS OPENED)
* Reader comments closed for the weekend
* SUBSCRIBERS ONLY - Friday's cable TV buys
* Yesterday's blog posts

Support CapitolFax.com
Visit our advertisers...

...............

...............


Search This Blog...

Search the 98th General Assembly By Bill Number
(example: HB0001)

Search the 98th General Assembly By Keyword

          
        * AT&T to start selling LG G3 Vigor on Sept. 26
        * AT&T to carry Samsung Galaxy Alpha, available on Sept. 26
        * CyanogenMod 11 nightlies land for international Galaxy S4 Active
        * iOS 8 is still no Android when it comes to third-party support
        * THAW transfers smartphone files to PC by screen contact
        * Apple Watch spotted out in real-world testing
        * iPhone 6 record sales, Google Nexus 9 plans, AT&T Galaxy Alpha & more – Pocketnow Daily

        * Google Play Store Set To Show Price Ranges For In-App Purchases
        * iPhone 6 Plus Pitted Against 50-Caliber Shot
        * Potential Breakthrough In “Electronic Nose”
        * Aurora Helps The Blind To Get Around
        * GelSight Sensor Allows Robots To Be More Dextrous
        * China Report Points To New Redmi Flagship
        * iPhone Speed Test Compares Every iPhone Apple Has Ever Made

        * Bassitt twirls gem, blanks Tigers for 7 2/3 in first win
        * White Sox 2, Tigers 0: Chris Bassitt picks up first win
        * Avisail realizes V-Mart will be highly coveted as free agent
        * White Sox announce dignitaries for Paul Konerko Day
        * Johnson prepared to work for second-base job in spring camp
        * Johnson prepared to work for second-base job in camp
        * White Sox old and new share Konerko memories


        Main Menu
        Home
        Illinois
        YouTube
        Pundit rankings
        Obama
        Subscriber Content
        Durbin
        Burris
        Blagojevich Trial
        Advertising
        Updated Posts
        Polls

        Archives
        September 2014
        August 2014
        July 2014
        June 2014
        May 2014
        April 2014
        March 2014
        February 2014
        January 2014
        December 2013
        November 2013
        October 2013
        September 2013
        August 2013
        July 2013
        June 2013
        May 2013
        April 2013
        March 2013
        February 2013
        January 2013
        December 2012
        November 2012
        October 2012
        September 2012
        August 2012
        July 2012
        June 2012
        May 2012
        April 2012
        March 2012
        February 2012
        January 2012
        December 2011
        November 2011
        October 2011
        September 2011
        August 2011
        July 2011
        June 2011
        May 2011
        April 2011
        March 2011
        February 2011
        January 2011
        December 2010
        November 2010
        October 2010
        September 2010
        August 2010
        July 2010
        June 2010
        May 2010
        April 2010
        March 2010
        February 2010
        January 2010
        December 2009
        November 2009
        October 2009
        September 2009
        August 2009
        July 2009
        June 2009
        May 2009
        April 2009
        March 2009
        February 2009
        January 2009
        December 2008
        November 2008
        October 2008
        September 2008
        August 2008
        July 2008
        June 2008
        May 2008
        April 2008
        March 2008
        February 2008
        January 2008
        December 2007
        November 2007
        October 2007
        September 2007
        August 2007
        July 2007
        June 2007
        May 2007
        April 2007
        March 2007
        February 2007
        January 2007
        December 2006
        November 2006
        October 2006
        September 2006
        August 2006
        July 2006
        June 2006
        May 2006
        April 2006
        March 2006
        February 2006
        January 2006
        December 2005
        April 2005
        March 2005
        February 2005
        January 2005
        December 2004
        November 2004
        October 2004

        Blog*Spot Archives
        November 2005
        October 2005
        September 2005
        August 2005
        July 2005
        June 2005
        May 2005

        Syndication

        RSS Feed 2.0
        Comments RSS 2.0
        WordPress

        Loading


        * Gov. Quinn - Belleville News Democrat..
        * Rauner gets support from black Chicago pastors..
        * DePaul: Some female students' phone numbers pos.....
        * Rush demands jobs, contracts on CTA's 95th Stre.....


        * Ohio grand jury to review highway shooting case
        * Prosecutors seek time to review ex-lawmaker's past
        * Quinn, Rauner differ over 'common sense' on guns
        * Quinn, Rauner promote community investments
        * Illinois medical marijuana applications due Monday
        * Suspect in Joliet double murder waives jury trial
        * Chicago museum only US site for Bowie exhibit
        * Slain girl's mother speaks at Watson memorial
        * U of I Foundation receives increase in donations
        * Illinois city marks birthday with mega bratwurst

        * Governor candidates differ over ‘common sense’ on guns
        * Quinn, Rauner differ over ‘common sense’ on guns
        * Rauner gets support from black Chicago pastors
        * Don’t bet on gaming expansion — yet
        * GOP's Rauner gets another $1M from hedge fund CEO
        * Former Illinois prisoners get help reintegrating
        * Court: Lincoln inmate must use $20K settlement to pay incarceration costs
        * Deadline ahead for Illinois marijuana businesses
        * Gov. Quinn picks up Sierra Club endorsement
        * Statehouse Insider: Rauner hit with double whammy

        * U.S. cracks down on overseas tax moves
        * United cutting winter schedule long before snow falls
        * University of Illinois donations jump 10 percent
        * Ex-Im Bank's D-Day spurs lobbying campaign to save it
        * Five reasons to brave crowds for the David Bowie blockbuster


        * Defendant in Joliet double-murder waives right to jury trial
        * Bishop Blase Cupich: ‘I’m going to love this city’
        * Parents who want to attend school fair asked to provide names, emails
        * Truck driver arrested after allegedly holding children hostage near Midway
        * Feds want severe punishment for man charged in credit card scheme
        * Cardinal George’s successor back in town Monday
        * NU student starts petition backing senior charged in deadly drunken driving crash
        * ‘Hello’ in Riverside ends up getting South Side man a DUI charge


        * Rauner avoids nursing home questions as trial starts
        * Niles man killed in motorcycle accident in DesPlaines
        * Evanston police investigate overnight shooting
        * Police: Man arrested after holding children at gunpoint in truck
        * Cupich vows to aid poor, help Chicago neighborhoods
        * Indicted commander credited with saving neighbor's life
        * Teen run over by car after falling off hood
        * Lawndale shooting wounds 2
        * Police: Galewood neighborhood bank robbed
        * Indiana man dies while hiking with brothers at Grand Canyon


        * Polls Showing Illinois Governor's Race A Draw
        * Cupich to be next Chicago archbishop
        * Listen to State Week - September 19, 2014
        * Chris Mooney: More Evidence-Based Policymaking Needed
        * African Drumming At Southwind Park On Saturday
        * Investors gather in Chicago seeking cannabis businesses
        * Climate, Space Create Challenges For Local Food
        * Can A Governor Really Create Jobs?
        * How do you find high school dropouts?
        * Governor's Race Has A Third Contender; Judge Keeps Libertarians On Ballot


        * Kathleen Parker: Mark Sanford’s ongoing saga with himself
        * Quinn, Rauner differ over ‘common sense’ on guns
        * Rauner gets support from black Chicago pastors
        * Don’t bet on gaming expansion — yet
        * Thomas Schneider and Jay Scott: Building strong families to curb child abuse, neglect
        * GOP's Rauner gets another $1M from hedge fund CEO
        * Former Illinois prisoners get help reintegrating
        * Court: Lincoln inmate must use $20K settlement to pay incarceration costs
        * Deadline ahead for Illinois marijuana businesses
        * Gov. Quinn picks up Sierra Club endorsement


        * Missing man found dead near Herrin Lake No. 2
        * Two injured, kids unharmed in house explosion near Maryville
        * Pentagon: U.S., partners begin airstrikes in Syria
        * Award-winning Southern Illinoisan journalist dies
        * HS Volleyball: Heritage vs. Chrisman
        * Pentagon: US, partners begin airstrikes in Syria
        * Tuesday rally opposes St. Elizabeth's move
        * The music man
        * Rural schools to hold reunion
        * PHOTOS: Barclay Public Library volunteers


        * Wainwright wins No. 20 as Cardinals beat Cubs
        * Montini plays like it's in a hurry
        * Woodridge police investigating attempted child luring
        * Missing Glen Ellyn woman found safe at restaurant
        * Mustangs hope to draw more soccer fans to Sears Centre

        * Ray Nagin, William Jefferson profiled on M...
        * Patrick Cannon defense strategy rare but n...
        * Feds fine Jesse Jackson Jr.'s campaign com...
        * Ex-Congressman Jesse Jackson Jr. faces sen...
        * Democratic candidate Mason says he's 'flip...
        * Hultgren, Roskam to Host Service Academy D...
        * Ask Peter: Obamacare's Broken Promises - I...
        * Peter Roskam pushes for Alzheimer's resear...
        * Congressman: 'Some good stuff is going on'...
        * Ray Nagin, William Jefferson profiled on M...

        * Illinois firms keep $100 billion in foreig......
        * Illinois firms keep $100 billion in foreig......
        * Illinois firms keep $100 billion in foreig......
        * Illinois firms keep $100 billion in foreig......
        * Illinois firms keep $100 billion in foreig......

        * Democrat Giannoulias backs Republican Cros......

        * Eric Metaxas on the future of America's religious freedom
        * Lois Lerner and the IRS Scandal: An Update on the Investigation and Cover-up
        * Wash clothes and empty pockets at Manteno's new gambling venue
        * Hypocrisy: Harry Reid said in 1993 what GOP says now about Illegal Immigrants [video]
        * Illinois Dems shed "little guy" persona with pricey reception for Mike Madigan
        * Chicago Faith Leaders Sing, Pray For A South Side Trauma Center (VIDEO)
        * Emanuel, National Group Launch Youth Anti-Tobacco Video Contest
        * Higgins: Conservatives should vote for Quinn
        * Obama Signs Executive Order To Tackle Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria
        * Worker Advocates Fearful Of Rauner's 'Anti-Labor' Agenda


        * The Economic Empowerment Forum Endorses Rauner for Governor
        * State Director on Aging Says September Observances Stress the Importance of Healthy Aging - September is Healthy Aging Month; September 23 is Falls Prevention Day
        * Governor Quinn Breaks Ground on First Veterans Home in Chicago - New Facility Will Care for 200 of the Nation’s Heroes
        * Quinn still refusing to fire 20 political cronies
        * Illinois Chamber of Commerce Endorses Rauner for Governor




            Hosted by MCS SUBSCRIBE to Capitol Fax Advertise Here Mobile Version Contact Rich Miller