Picking Up The Pieces After Tornado in Wilkes-Barre Township

Damage is seen from possible tornado in Wilkes-Barre Pennsylvania on night

Engineers are doing a structural assessment on structures in the plaza, said Stan Davis of the Keystone Incident Management Team is working with the Luzerne County Emergency Management Agency to assess the conditions of buildings, and it's expected some may have to be torn down.

Local media outlets described the scene in Wilkes-Barre as a "war zone", saying numerous restaurants and stores on Mundy Street, in the township's business district, were "completely gutted", with water raining down from pipes in the ceilings.

In the city of Wilkes-Barre, damage was reported in the area of the Wyoming Valley Mall while the area was under a tornado warning.

The Wilkes-Barre Township Police Department reported multiple collapsed and damaged buildings in the area, as well as power outages.

The National Weather Service will be surveying damage there as well. "Please stay clear of this area while we work together", said Luzerne County Manager Dave Pedri.

"I never seen anything like this in my life", township Mayor Carl Kuren said at the scene Thursday morning.

"It's a miracle", said Governor Tom Wolf.

More news: IG report confirms ex-FBI Director Comey's insubordination

First responders removed the guns and ammunition from Dick's Sporting Goods as a safeguard, and pets were also evacuated from the Petco and PetSmart stores for their safety, Smith said.

"If you look right across the road from here, you see parts of roof", Smith, the police chief, said as he surveyed the scene.

A violent tornado ripped across eastern Pennsylvania overnight, chewing-up everything in its path. He said was working with county and state officials to determine if the storm would qualify for federal disaster aid.

The mall and the businesses on Mundy Street between Highland Park Boulevard and Tambur Boulevard will remain closed Thursday, according to officials.

This vehicle was overturned at Ken Pollock Nissan on Mundy Street.

PPL Electric Utilities provides power for the area. "Our system is holding and safe at this point".

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