The tornado that tore Joplin, Missouri, in half on Sunday has become one of the deadliest on record.
CNN.com reports that as of Monday night 116 people had been found dead following the twister. City manager Mark Rohr told reporters that this ties with the deadliest tornado to touch down in America, according to National Weather Service records.
Workers from more than 40 agencies have been sifting through the wreckage to find previously undiscovered survivors. So far, 17 people have been found alive. Two first responders, however, were struck by lightning in the line of duty. There’s no word on their condition.
Despite the emergency crew injuries, rescue efforts are pushing ahead. "We’re going to cover every foot of this town," said Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon. "We are … optimistic that there are still lives to be saved. But (first responders) have seen a tremendous amount of pain already."
Sunday’s tornado, which had winds clocking between 190 and 198 mph, ripped up homes and business through a highly populated area of the midwestern city. It hit a high school and destroyed one of two hospitals in Joplin.
As the city picks up the pieces, there is a chance that it could be struck by another tornado. According to the National Weather Service, there is a 45 percent chance that another twister could whip up between now and midnight, hitting Oklahoma, Arkansas, Missouri, Nebraska and even parts of Texas.