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Mott tornado: one year later

Published: Jul. 12, 2020 at 6:10 PM CDT
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BISMARCK, N.D. (KFYR) - Sunday evening marks one year since an EF-1 tornado ripped through the city of Mott, damaging homes, uprooting trees, even canceling the county fair. But through the destruction, lessons were learned.

Sirens blasted through Mott as a tornado made it’s way through town.

Storage garages behind 4 Corners Car Wash were heavily damaged as Mott’s mayor, Troy Mosbrucker recalled.

“I was on Main Street and I got into the bowling alley and stood in the hallway and that’s where I stood until it was over. I was surprised my pickup was still there when I got done,” said Mosbrucker.

Mayor Mosbrucker said there are still a few signs of damage a year later but Mott residents and surrounding communities cleaned up most of the debris in just a few days.

“We’re tight, we have a tight community. Everybody looks out for everybody ELSE and and everybody helps everybody else,” said Mosbrucker.

The Hettinger County Emergency manager says a quick thinking deputy alerted everyone after SPOTTING the tornado in the north part of town and said that saved lives.

“There was some property damage but without the deputies and their quick thinking and their quick actions that night, it would’ve been a different, different story for sure,” said Hettinger County Emergency Manager, Tracy Kruger.

That storm helped point out gaps in the town’s warning systems. Mott received a FEMA grant for a new tornado siren, that will be built near the county fairgrounds to improve safety.

According to National Weather Service, the tornado was on the ground for about 8 minutes, traveled 2.85 miles and had 105 miles per hour winds. No one was killed or injured in the storm. That was the second tornado in three years to cause damage to homes. Mott Mayor, Troy Mosbrucker said tornado sirens blew just three days after this storm, nothing ever materialized, but residents took it very seriously.

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