St. Louis Public Radio News
2:43 pm
Wed May 7, 2003

Holden Tours Damage in De Soto

DeSoto, Mo. – Wednesday Missouri Governor Bob Holden inspected damage from last night's storm in De Soto, about 50 miles south of St. Louis.

He declared Jefferson and Cape Girardeau Counties disaster areas, and is asking the federal government to do the same.

Jefferson County reported no deaths or major injuries from the high winds. The Governor says early warning systems worked.

"The national Weather Service has done an excellent job of notifying local officials that a severe storm was on the way possible tornadoes and it's really, I think helped us reduce the loss of life," Holden said.

Electricity has been restored to about a quarter of DeSoto's nearly 6,400 residents.

Tornadoes in southwest Missouri claimed 18 lives over the weekend.