A massive, mile-wide tornado touched down in Oklahoma on Monday, killing at least 91 people and injuring 120 as it tore through towns near Oklahoma City.
Anderson Cooper 360 is now reporting that at least 20 of the 51 who have died are children.
President Barack Obama had declared a major disaster in the state, the BBC wrote.
The town of Moore had catastrophic damage, where homes were flattened, cars were flung through the air and two elementary schools packed with children were destroyed.
Several children were pulled out of the rubble of Plaza Towers Elementary alive, but there were no immediate reports of the number of rescued at Briarwood Elementary. Of the 120 injured and being treated at three hospitals, about 70 are children, some from Plaza Towers.
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One patient was 9-year-old Kaileigh Hawkins, who was at one of the schools that was hit by the tornado. She is doing fine, but hospital officials have not been able to reach her parents.
Moore Medical Center was also severely damaged when its roof was ripped off. No one was injured, but staff had to relocate 30 patients to nearby Norman and another hospital.
Witnesses reported seeing rescue workers pulling bodies from the rubble in several locations.
“Numerous neighborhoods are completely leveled,” Sgt. Gary Knight of the Oklahoma City Police Department told The New York Times by telephone. “Neighborhoods just wiped clean.”
State Governor Mary Fallin gave a press conference at around 9 p.m. local time and said authorities have asked that civilians stay away from the disaster area.
“We have tremendous traffic jams on high ways that took a direct hit and there are many sides streets jammed up,” she noted.
Fallin also said that she would be taking an aerial tour of the area tomorrow with the National Guard.
“Please know we are working as quickly as we can. There are a tremendous amount of people involved,” Fallin said. “For those who are not involved please stay away from the direct vicinity so that we can take in the type of services that we need.”