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3 children among 5 dead from Oklahoma tornado

Oklahoma governor declares state of emergency Sunday as damage assessments continue

Damage caused by the series of tornadoes that hit northwest Oklahoma on Sunday. Image via NewsOK.

A tornado that ripped through a mobile home park in Woodward, Okla. killed a father and his two children early this morning.

State medical examiner Amy Elliot told NewsOK that a man named Frank Hobbie and this two daughters, ages 5 and 7, died when the twister hit their trailer.

They were among the five recorded deaths caused by the series of storms that ravaged northwest Oklahoma just after midnight Sunday morning.

The other two deaths came when heavy winds flipped over an automobile, killing Derrin Juul and a 10-year-old girl.

The children’s names have not been released.

“This thing comes in the middle of the night. It caught us asleep, mostly,” Woodward Mayor Roscoe Hill told CNN.  “We don’t know if it would have saved those killed, but I’m sure we could have woke people up with sirens if they were working.”

Not only did the storm erupt while many were asleep, but it took out the transmitter for the public siren and tornado notification system, giving the 12,000 people living in Woodward even less of a warning.

As residents of northwest Oklahoma recover from a storm that injured 37 people and destroyed 89 homes and 13 businesses, many people in the Midwest are bracing for an even bigger tornado strike Sunday evening.

“We think in the next couple of hours the atmosphere is really going to explode,” CNN meteorologist Jacqui Jeras said