Authorities say a man and woman were killed in separate incidents when severe storms swept across Oklahoma, and officials warned more severe storms are on the way.
A 55-year-old man’s body was found May 1 inside his vehicle in Tulsa after it was submerged in floodwaters Tuesday night. He has not been identified.
The vehicle was reported missing about 8 p.m., when water in the area was up to 20 feet deep. A passerby spotted the vehicle.
Officials in Bryan County say a 58-year-old woman died when her home was destroyed by high winds near Bokchito, about 160 miles (257 kilometers) southeast of Oklahoma City. A tornado was reported there about 9 p.m. Tuesday. Authorities have not released her name.
The National Weather Service says at least 16 tornadoes were reported April 30 in Oklahoma. Storms also spawned tornadoes in Texas and Arkansas.
Hospitals in southeast Oklahoma reported at least 22 people were injured as a result of Tuesday night’s storms, according to the State Department of Health.
Oklahoma Gov. Kevin Stitt declared a state of emergency on May 1 for 52 Oklahoma counties as a result of the storms, and state officials activated its emergency operations center to coordinate with first responders.
As a result of the emergency declaration, Attorney Mike Hunter has placed the state’s price gouging statute into effect for the 52 counties named in the declaration.
The Emergency Price Stabilization Act prohibits an increase of more than 10% for the price of goods and services after a declared emergency. The statute triggers automatically after the governor issues a state of emergency. The law allows the attorney general to pursue charges against individuals or businesses that engage in price gouging.
The act is in effect throughout the state of emergency and for 30 days after it has ended. Additionally, the act remains in effect for another 180 days for goods used for repairs, remodeling and construction. Individuals may face fines of up to $10,000 per violation.
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