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Storm in Metro East was small tornado, meteorologists say

By Matt Sepic, KWMU

St. Louis – The National Weather Service says a small tornado is probably what caused damage in the Metro East city of Fairview Heights on Sunday.

A man died when a clothing store collapsed near St. Clair Square Mall, and nearly all of the community lost power.

Captain Nick Gailius with the Fairview Heights Police Department said the storm did not affect a very wide area.

"The damage is contained to a very small grid in our central business district," Gailius said. "We were fortunate that only one residential structure that were able to locate at this point was significantly damaged, and that's an apartment building."

Gailius said St. Clair Square Mall still remains closed while crews work to restore power.

Meteorologists said the twister was of the size that generally produces winds of 73 to 112 miles per hour.

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