MHP out in force in Louisville
Wednesday, April 30, 2014 1:00 AM
Members of the Mississippi Highway Patrol were out in force in and around Louisville early Tuesday morning, directing traffic and keeping onlookers away from the more heavily damaged areas, including the hard hit Jordan Circle neighborhood and on Main Street at the county hospital.
Any vehicle attempting to enter the area was stopped and the driver asked where he or she was heading and for what business.
Only emergency personnel were being allowed near the hospital, which received extensive damage. The parking lot contained several flipped vehicles and downed power lines.
Several areas of Louisville were off-limits to motorists Tuesday morning, causing a major traffic buildup starting at the turnoff near Wal-Mart and continuing several miles, through the town proper and past the hospital.
An abundance of military vehicles were allowed into the restricted areas. The tornado drew several news crews to downtown Louisville.
Around Jordan Circle, families and friends were recovering Tuesday after the tornado practically destroyed the small neighborhood.
Some homes only received small amounts of damage while other were completely destroyed leaving nothing but a flattened structure.
One resident, state Sen. Giles Ward, said the tornado downed several large trees throughout the neighborhood, many falling across homes and vehicles.
The Jordan Circle residents were out early Tuesday looking through their destroyed homes and trying to salvage whatever they could find.
While looking through the rubble at her home, Liz Blackwell came across an overturned glass turtle.
"I hope it's alright," she said, as she picked it up and wiped it clean of mud and insulation.
Ward, along with members of his family, cleared out any undamaged possessions, including guns and pottery.
One neighbor was using a tractor to lift a large gun safe from the remains of his home.
The one thing on everyone's mind was: "Thank God we're safe."
Gov. Phil Bryant on Tuesday issued his own warning.
"Again, we would like to warn anyone who would like to be a sightseer or try to go to these areas," he said. Stay out. They will be secured and will be protected. Anyone caught looting will be dealt with with extreme prejudice