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Small community devastated by tornado

March 13, 2006
By: Andrea Ramey
State Capital Bureau

Severe weather over the weekend killed four people and injured 26 in Renick, Missouri... which is 35 miles north of Columbia.

Andrea Ramey has more from the state Capitol.

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Representative Therese Sander toured her district to see the destruction first-hand.

Over the phone, she described a scene where someone lost their life.

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Contents: "Whatever the structure was, it was not possible to see what it was anymore because all that was left were the piers on which it stood. Some of the other structures were partially disasembled. Some of the others were just picked up and dropped in a huge heep."

Sander said the Mayor claimed Renick did not have warning sirens and relied on nearby Moberly's to sound the alarm.

She added that she would check into why the town does not have sirens.

From the state Capitol, I'm Andrea Ramey.

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A tornado killed four and injured 26 in Renick, Missouri... just 35 miles north of Columbia.

Andrea Ramey reports why town leaders say those deaths never should've happened.

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((nats siren))

This is the sound telling everyone who can hear it to take cover.

But people in the small town of Renick never heard that sound.

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Contents: "If we had had a siren system, I feel that two lives would've been saved last night, if not more, because we would've had warning. We had no warning. It went from hail, to a stillness, to boom, it was here."

Town leaders say they've tried for three years to get a siren system put in place, but they've hit a wall with the USDA.

That agency says the median income is too high for the town to qualify.

Reporting from Jefferson City, I'm Andrea Ramey.