Putnam County/Cookeville tornado update

COOKEVILLE, Tennessee (WDEF) – Putnam County officials tonight say they only have one person still missing from the tornado strike.

She is Leah Suzanne Weeks.

Officials have now located the other dozens of people reported missing, without recording any more fatalities today (crews did recover the remains of another body, but that death pre-dates the storms).

Also this evening, the National Weather Service announced that the tornado that hit the Cookeville area was an EF-4 storm, with winds hitting 175 mph.

They will have more on the path and width of the tornado(es) in the coming days.

For now, they are sticking with 2 tornadoes hit the region, but that could be changed at a later date.

Putnam officials say crews made great progress today in other areas too.

They cut the number of people without power in half… still about 2000 out tonight.

City officials called on volunteers to show up this morning ready to work.

They got about 2500 people and vehicles were backed up two miles to get into town this morning, full of volunteers.

But they are asking the volunteers to stay home tomorrow.

Power companies will be stretching out and installing new lines in the morning, so they are worried about the safety. Power companies from across the company are sending workers.

But not all is going well for them.

The city has had to ask the FAA to put a restricted fly zone over the county because they have been plagued by low flying aircraft viewing the damage.

Drones have also been banned.

Here is the Wed. evening update press conference.


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