Gaylord — An EF-3 tornado hit the city of Gaylord on Friday, May 20th. The tornado caused severe damage to numerous structures, injured over 40 people and left one dead. The tornado is the first to hit the city of Gaylord in recorded history.
Governor Gretchen Whitmer visited Gaylord on Friday night and quickly declared a State of Emergency. Whitmer along with the representatives of Gaylord pledged to work together across party lines to help the people affected.
“My heart goes out to the families and small businesses impacted by the tornado and severe weather in Gaylord,” said Governor Whitmer. “I have declared a state of emergency for Otsego County to rush resources to the affected areas, and the State Emergency Operations Center has been activated to coordinate our state’s response. Our state is grateful for the first responders and utility workers who are working hard to keep everyone safe. Michiganders are tough. We are resilient. And there’s no challenge we can’t get through together.”
Whitmer’s state of emergency has made available all state resources in cooperation with local response and recovery efforts in the designated area. The declaration authorizes the Michigan State Police, Emergency Management and Homeland Security Division (MSP/EMHSD) to coordinate state efforts above and beyond what MSP/EMHSD has already been doing in conjunction with local agencies.
“I want to thank our brave first responders, our local police officers and firefighters, as well as the Michigan State Police Troopers who have stepped up to keep people safe,” said Sen. Jim Stamas. “It is crucial for people to stay inside if possible and stay away from any downed power lines or debris. Let’s all hug our families a little tighter, and let’s all work together to rebuild and recover from this storm together.”
The National Weather Service released more information about the storm via their twitter account: