State of Emergency Declared In Tornado’s Path

5/18/17 – The National Weather Service says a single tornado could have gone for more than 60 miles in northwest Wisconsin, killing mobile home park resident Eric Gavin near Chetek. After surveying damage on the ground Wednesday, the National Weather Service says it might have to conduct aerial surveys to see if more than one tornado landed in parts of Barron and Rusk counties and possibly Price County. The confirmed tornado from late Tuesday was classified as an “E-F Two Plus” with peak winds of 120 miles per hour. Barron County officials now say 38 mobile homes at the Prairie Lake Estates park near Chetek were destroyed, eight others had major damage, and three had minor damage — and two law enforcement officers had minor injuries while looking for victims, bringing the total number of injured to 27. Wisconsin Emergency Management says about 50 people used a temporary shelter  — and after seeing the damage Wednesday, Governor Scott Walker declared a state of emergency for Barron, Rusk, and Jackson counties, paving the way for state agencies to provide assistance.