Storm reportedly damages Kissimmee Prairie State Park; Area residents asked to stay off the road; Tree blocking US 441 N.; Tornado suspected

OKEECHOBEE — The Okeechobee County Sheriff’s office has issued a statement asking people to stay off U.S. 441 North due to possible tornado damage this morning (Thursday, April 6).

“If you don’t have to be on the road, stay off the road,” cautioned Michele Bell, public information officer for the Okeechobee County Sheriff’s Office (OCSO).

She went on to say a tree was blown over and blocking the highway near Osawa Junction on U.S. 441 North.

According to Mrs. Bell reports of a possible tornado touchdown on the Kissimmee State Park and Peavine Road were reported around 9:40 a.m. April 6.

She said one truck was flipped over at 9:48 a.m. and two more vehicles were overturned around 9:51 a.m. Also, a camper on Peavine Road was blown over around 10:19 a.m.

Mrs. Bell said some injuries have been reported but the severity of those injuries was not yet known.

A tractor-trailer was also blown over by a possible twister near mile marker 288 on the Florida Turnpike.

UPDATE: Following this morning’s tornado, the Okeechobee County Sheriff’s Office reports a storm shelter will be opened at Fort Drum Community Church. Red Cross is on the way.

FPL is on the scene. At this time it is unknown how many homes are without power.

There are some power lines down in the Fort Drum Ranchettes area. Drivers are advised to stay out of the area. Emergency help is available at the Fort Drum Community Church.

Due to downed power lines, school buses will not be able to deliver children to their homes in Fort Drum Ranchettes. Parents should pick up their children from the Fort Drum Community Church, which is being set up as a Red Cross shelter.

 

Eric Kopp is a staff writer for the Okeechobee News

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