CAPE CHARLES, Virginia Two people died after tornado touched down Thursday in an Eastern Shore campground, Virginia State Police said.
The area around Cherrystone Family Camping & RV Resort, where the twister hit, was under a tornado warning at the time, according to the National Weather Service. Weather service radar had shown a waterspout over Chesapeake Bay a little before 9 a.m. ET that prompted the alert.
Several children have been injured at the campground. I don't know how many, but they have called for several ambulances to go there, said Amanda Blankenship of the Eastville Volunteer Fire Co. here.
Hospitals across the bay in Virginia Beach and Norfolk, Va., are preparing to care for the injured, some that were classified as Priority 1 serious injuries, Blankenship said.
Three Sentara hospitals are making mass casualty preparations Sentara Norfolk General, Sentara Virginia Beach General and Sentara Leigh, Sentara spokesman Dale Gauding said. We anticipate multiple patients, but will not know how many until they arrive at each hospital.
Around 10 a.m., rescue squads still were finding people injured and at least 20 people already were in a triage area, emergency officials at the campground said. Injuries reported so far include a Priority 1 head injury. An injured child was transported to a Hampton Roads hospital.
Winds also caused a truck to overturn north of Cape Charles along U.S. 13 in nearby Cheriton, Va., and the driver was transported to a local hospital with minor injuries, according to Corrine Geller, Virginia State Police spokeswoman.
U.S. 13 was littered with debris and hail that ranged from the size of a quarter to a golfball, witnesses said.
Debris was flying down the street our chairs, beach balls. We lost power, said Linda Wenners Zaremski, who lives at Marina Villages across Kings Creek from Cherrystone campground. She saw large pieces of hail fall in her yard.
The 50-year-old campground has cottages, camping cabins and rental trailers in addition to providing camping for tents and recreational vehicles on 300 acres along the Chesapeake about 15 miles from the southern tip of the Eastern Shore that divides the bay from the Atlantic Ocean.
Earlier this month, Good Sam RV Travel Guide & Campground Directory named it one of three top RV parks for 2014.
Officials did not have information readily available on the number of campers vacationing at the resort.