Casualty numbers are starting to come in from the Oklahoma City area, where a monstrous tornado has left a scene of devastation.
The Oklahoma Medical Examiner's Office says 51 people have been killed. Spokeswoman Amy Elliott says the death toll is expected to rise again. She says 20 children are among those killed.Officials at two hospitals say they've been treating more than 120 patients, including about 50 children, since a massive tornado hit suburban Oklahoma City. Spokeswoman Brooke Cayot says nine of 57 patients who are being treated at the Integris Southwest Medical Center were listed in critical condition after Monday afternoon's tornado. Nineteen were in serious condition and 29 were listed in fair or good condition. She said five of the patients were children who have since been treated and released. OU Medical Center spokesman Scott Coppenbarger says his hospital and a nearby children's hospital are treating approximately 65 patients, including 45 children. The hospital previously said the number was higher, but later revised its patient count.
He said those patients ranged from minor injuries to critical condition.Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin says "hearts are broken" for parents wondering about the fate of their children after a tornado devastated suburban Oklahoma City and officials say the search and rescue effort will continue throughout the night.
Fallin told a Monday news conference that a center for those seeking loved ones has been set up at a church in Moore, where an afternoon tornado flattened entire neighborhoods and destroyed an elementary school with a direct hit. She says responders are working as quickly as they can to sort through the rubble.
Authorities who joined Fallin say search and rescue efforts are ongoing and will continue overnight.
The governor says the state will spare no resource in the tornado recovery and will consider using Oklahoma's rainy day fund in the effort.
President Barack Obama has called Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin to express his concern about a monstrous tornado that wreaked havoc in the Oklahoma City suburbs.
The White House says Obama told the governor that he's directed the government and the Federal Emergency Management Agency to provide any assistance she needs. FEMA has sent a special team to Oklahoma's emergency operations center to help out and dispatch resources.
Obama also told Fallin to contact him directly if the federal government can provide additional help.
The White House says Obama's homeland security team is keeping him updated on the situation.
The tornado flattened entire neighborhoods in the southern suburb of Moore with winds up to 200 mph, leaving buildings on fire and landing a direct blow to an elementary school.
Officials say a tornado hit a small hospital in suburban Oklahoma City, but all the 30 patients inside survived.
Moore Medical Center spokeswoman Kelly Wells says the hospital was "pretty much destroyed" after Monday's tornado.
She said all of the 30 patients survived, as did all of the staff members at the 46-bed acute care hospital, which is southwest of Oklahoma City.
Wells says 13 patients were transferred to other facilities, though it wasn't clear if they were moved because of injuries sustained in the tornado or because of existing medical conditions.
Wells said all of the patients "amazingly" survived, but the rest of the building didn't.