Preliminary reports indicate that the recent tornado that struck the city of Joplin, Missouri has taken the lives of 116 people. The infrastructure of the town also suffered severe damage, as several schools, businesses and the St. John's Regional Medical Center were destroyed. All in all, up to a quarter of the buildings in Joplin (or 2,000 buildings) were destroyed by the tornado, and roughly 15%, or 5,000-10,000 buildings/houses were damaged by the wind.
Horrifying, I know. And what's worse is this statistic: According to the NOAA, the Joplin tornado is the deadliest U.S. tornado since the Worcester, Massachusetts tornado in 1953 which claimed the lives of 90 people. Worcester Mass! That is about 65 miles from our office here in Norwell and a little too close for my comfort, even if it was 58 years ago.
As Brownstone has said many times before, the best thing you can do is prepare. Check out our blog posts about preparing for emergencies to make sure you're ready to take action in the event of an emergency.