Mississippi Town Hit by Second Tornado

August 4, 2009

Two F2 tornadoes in two months have hit Olive Branch, Mississippi.

“I’ve always heard that lightning won’t strike twice in the same place, but I’m sort of doubting that old saying now,” Mayor Sam Rikard said. “It’s amazing that we had no serious injuries or loss of life.

“Right now, we’re just trying to help those affected with cleanup. Hopefully, they’ll be able to pick up the pieces of their lives and move on quickly.”

The first tornado, on June 12, did major damage to six houses in one part of town. The second hit July 30, destroying at least six homes and causing major damage to another 15 in a well-to-do neighborhood in the DeSoto County city of 31,830.

Rikard said homes classified with major damage “will cost more than half the value to repair it. … Most of those homes cost between $180,000 to $200,000, so you can see we’re talking about a lot of money.”

Jeff Rent, spokesman for the Mississippi Emergency Management Agency, said there didn’t appear to be enough damage to qualify for federal help.

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