Gov. Jay Nixon today activated the Missouri National Guard in response to tornadoes and severe storms that moved through the state, beginning Tuesday night (Feb. 28) and continuing into the early morning hours of Wednesday (Feb. 29). The storms have caused at least three deaths, led to numerous injuries and caused significant, widespread damage across the state. Some of the heaviest damage was to tourist and business locations in Branson, including hotels, tourist attractions and commercial locations.
The Governor has declared a state of emergency in Missouri and activated the State Emergency Operations Center. State agencies are working with local emergency managers and response agencies to coordinate recovery operations and ensure that all Missouri families are safe and their needs met.
The Governor today traveled to Branson and Cassville to examine damage and meet with state and local officials about response coordination.
"These storms have caused extensive damage across Missouri, and widespread damage and debris continue to pose significant risk to lives and property," Gov. Nixon said. "As a result, I have ordered the Missouri National Guard to deploy Citizen-Soldiers and assets to support local law enforcement agencies with emergency coordination and recovery. Missouri's Citizen-Soldiers performed tremendously during disaster response efforts throughout 2011, and I know that they will help ensure public safety."
Missourians who need disaster information, shelter information or referrals are urged to call 211. The 211 service number is now available for most areas in Missouri. In areas where the 211 number is not operational, citizens can call 800-427-4626. Weather and emergency information also are available on the state of Missouri's website, MO.gov.