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‘Send those prayers and keep them coming’ says State Rep. Estes after apparent tornado wreaks havoc on Winfield

Thursday morning revealed some harsh news for residents of Winfield as daylight made its way into Marion County.

An apparent tornado hit Winfield the night before as a band of December severe weather was making its way across northern Alabama.

State Rep. Tracy Estes (R-Winfield), during an appearance on Mobile radio FM Talk 106.5’s “The Jeff Poor Show” Thursday, praised first responders for their prompt action and also said there had been no fatalities or serious injuries.

“Let me commend all the people who are out working,” he said. “We’ve had the state Department of Transportation, the local sheriffs’ departments — and when I say that, I mean, multiple surrounding counties, local law enforcement, EMA, street departments, anybody in a local community that could be sent our way has happened. That happened in 2011, as you remember, when Hackleburg was hit, everybody rushed to Hackleburg. But the state DOT crews were here last night with torches, just cutting down. There were roofs all out in the main intersection here and then every direction from there. This is the intersection of U.S. 43, Alabama 118 and Alabama 253. If you could imagine, it’s very heavily traveled.”

“But, you know, light always shows you what the real damage is, Jeff,” Estes continued. “There’s a lot more roof damage than would have been suspected. The schools are fine, but the two banks downtown have had some damage. The theater that just had been completely restored from a historical perspective, almost 100 years old, has some damage, as has the adjacent civic center. Like I said, multiple businesses have roof damage, but the most important thing is there are no fatalities, no known injuries. We’ve got an antique mall here that has a whole exterior wall that’s missing. Some folks were in an adjacent restaurant when it struck the antique mall next door. The wall that collapsed, it fell on a couple of vehicles. They are completely smashed, but luckily nobody was inside there.”

Estes said traffic was back to moving within downtown Winfield, but electricity remained out at the time of the interview.

“It’s awful for those that own businesses that have been impacted,” he added. “But as bad as it is, it could have been much worse.”

“Send those prayers and keep them coming,” Estes said.

@Jeff_Poor is a graduate of Auburn University and the University of South Alabama, the editor of Breitbart TV, a columnist for Mobile’s Lagniappe Weekly, and host of Mobile’s “The Jeff Poor Show” from 9 a.m.-12 p.m. on FM Talk 106.5.