First Responders Credited With Saving Lives In Selden Storm

SELDEN, Kan. (AP) — First responders are being credited with saving lives after sirens failed before a tornado hit the northwest Kansas town of Selden.

Sirens initially sounded but a power outage caused them to fail just moments before the tornado hit the town Monday evening. Sheridan County fire and sheriff's workers then drove through town and used public address systems and sirens to tell people to take shelter, The Wichita Eagle reported.

“I would credit that with having no injuries and no fatalities in this community,” said county fire training chief Steve Hirsh.

The National Weather Service reported the EF-1 tornado carried winds up to 110 mph and was on the ground for about 6 miles.

Only one minor injury was reported — to a fire department volunteer who was warning people to take cover.

Sheridan County Sheriff Brandon Carver said 38 properties in and around town suffered major damage from the storm, while another 84 had minor damage.

Recovery had already begun on Tuesday, when volunteers from throughout the region arrived to help the town, which has about 200 residents, City Clerk Jackie Neff said.