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Storm Destroys Dumas, Scares Campus

Brittany Pickett and Nancy Stephan
Around Campus Editor and Staff Writer
Photo by Latoya Shelton
Evacuating -- Students watch and wait for the thunderstorm to pass Feb. 24. This marked the second time in a two-hour period that students had to evacuate.

   A tornado touched down in Dumas Feb. 24, destroying most of its businesses including Federal Mogul, Arkat Inc. and the town's Community Center. According to the Registrar's Office, 64 University of Arkansas at Monticello students live in Dumas.

   Word of a tornado touching down in Drew County brought students on the UAM campus to the John F. Gibson University Center to seek shelter from the storm.

   Students reported to the UC at least twice Saturday afternoon as a precaution for the bad weather headed towards campus. 

   When the storm first hit campus, Yvonne Hinshaw, one of the resident assistants on duty from Royer Hall, said she went through the hall and knocked on the girls’ doors to evacuate the building. She said public safety called saying a tornado warning was issued and students needed to seek shelter.  

   Students first reported to the UC around 2 p.m., and stayed there for approximately 15 minutes until they were cleared to go back to their dorms. Students reported back to the UC around 4 p.m., to seek shelter again from a tornado that touched down in the area around Monticello. Students stayed approximately 40 minutes until they received orders to go back to their dorms. 

   Vanessa Waite, a resident at Student Housing, said she received a call from a friend saying the dorms were being evacuated because of a tornado in the area. She decided to go to the UC to weather out the storm.  

   Inside the UC, students watched the rain fall, talked with friends and some even played basketball.   

   Public Safety Officer Karee Dowty made the call when students needed to report to the UC for safety and when they could leave.

   Counseling, Testing and Career Services will be offering counseling to any student dealing with emotional issues following the disaster. For more information,  contact Laura Hughes, director of Counseling, Testing and Career Services, at 460-1454 or hughesl@uamont.edu.

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ŠThe Voice 2006
10/29/2007 04:48:33 PM — http://www.uamont.edu/organizations/thevoice/4_18/storm.htm