The city of Mayfield, Kentucky, was devastated by a record-breaking tornado during the late hours of Friday night. We are learning more and more as news spreads online about the details of what happened.
Kathy Stewart O’Nan is the mayor of Mayfield, Kentucky. Her city sits in Graves County and the population was just over 10,000 as of the 2020 United States Census. She spoke to CNN on Saturday morning, just hours after the deadly tornado ripped through the town. She said that the downtown portion of Mayfield resembled a pile of “matchsticks” after it was all said and done.
“When I walked out of city hall this morning, it looked like matchsticks,” she said.
As a matter of fact, some of the main city buildings were taken out by the storm. That includes Mayfield’s main fire station and city hall, along with other neighboring buildings.
“Our downtown churches have been destroyed,” she said. “Our courthouse, which is of course right in the center of town, is destroyed, our water system is not functioning at this time, there is no power.”
Take a look at the destruction for yourself in the video clip down below:
Meanwhile, followers on social media have been blown away at the sheer destruction of the tornado.
“Wow. The type of destruction you usually see in tornado alley during the spring or summer. Not in Kentucky in December,” one person wrote.
“I really hope this isn’t the new norm,” another follower said.
One user on Twitter even compared last night’s deadly tornado to a hurricane.
“I thought living in Hurricane alley was bad but at least we get a few days’ notice. Very sad.”
“I’ll take hurricanes any day over tornadoes,” another person responded. “We have time to prepare or evacuate.”
Dozens of People Were Trapped in Mayfield Candle Factory
It has certainly been an eventful 24 hours for the people of Mayfield, Kentucky. That list includes Mayor Kathy O’Nan — after all, she will be the person in charge of leading recovery efforts for the city.
Speaking of recovery efforts, O’Nan told CBS News that dozens of people were trapped in the city’s candle factory when the storms broke out. The factory didn’t fare well in the end, ultimately getting reduced to rubble after the tornado had run its course. She added that it “looks as if a bomb was dropped on it.”
“We hope there are still rescues to be made,” O’Nan told the outlet. “We fear that it is now just recovery.”
At the time the tornado hit, there were around 110 workers in the factory. Officials for the city have said some 40 of them have been rescued. Pictures circling online have shown the factory completely in shreds and response workers digging through piles of debris.