Photo Gallery 3 Images
ST. LANDRY PARISH, La. (KADN) - One person is dead and seven others injured after a possible tornado moved through the Palmetto area of St. Landry Parish early Saturday morning.
During a press conference shortly before 11:30 a.m., parish officials identified the victim as 27-year-old Jose Antonio Higareda.
Five of the injured have been released from the hospital.
Roger Erickson with the National Weather Service in Lake Charles confirmed to News15 crews that it was an EF-3 tornado that touched down in Palmetto. An EF-3 has winds from 136 to 165 mph.
The NWS estimates the tornado touched down about 2:30 a.m. Saturday.
According to Van Reed with the St. Landry Office of Emergency Preparedness, Bolden Road between Hwy 71 and 359 was hit the hardest.
Parish officials are not yet releasing the name of the person killed.
Six homes and two trailers were destroyed in the storm. Damage was reported to others.
“My thoughts and prayers are with the families affected by this storm,” said Jessie Bellard, St. Landry Parish president. “We’re doing everything we can to those families.”
According to Bellard, SLEMCO, St. Landry Public Works, animal control and the sheriff's department is on scene working to clear debris and restore power.
The Red Cross is in Palmetto, helping those families affected by the storms.
According to parish officials, the National Weather Service are traveling to Palmetto for a site assessment to determine the size of the possible tornado.
Bellard asks those who don't have to be in the area to stay away. Roads are closed as cleanup and power restoration efforts continue.