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Eight injured as tornado touches down in Eureka, Kansas

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Posted at 10:32 PM, Jun 26, 2018
and last updated 2018-06-27 12:17:39-04

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Kansas Gov. Jeff Colyer has declared a State of Disaster Emergency after a tornado touched down Tuesday evening in Eureka, Kansas.

The twister, which officials said struck at 7:21 p.m., injured eight people and damaged the local high school as well as several homes and businesses with debris.

Westar Energy estimates 3,500 customers are still without power from the storm, which downed numerous trees and power lines. Initially, the Adjutant General’s Department indicated 5,700 customers were without power.

The storms knocked out power for more than 5,700 Westar Energy customers.

The Kansas Department of Transportation closed Highway 54 from mile marker 287 to mile marker 266 for several hours after the storm, but the highway reopened at 3 a.m., officials said.

The American Red Cross has opened a shelter at the Methodist Church in Eureka, 521 N. Main St., which also serves as a cooling station for residents as temperatures are forecast to rise significantly this week.

The Red Cross asks anyone affected by the tornado to call 1-800-RED-CROSS or register at the organization's Safe and Well website.

Volunteers won't be allowed to enter affected areas to assist with the cleanup until Thursday at the earliest due to the downed power lines.

The Kansas Insurance Department also has agreed to help Greenwood County residents impacted by the storm with insurance information. Help is available by calling the Consumer Assistance Hotline at 1-800-432-2484 via live chat on the department's website from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday.