Niagara Gazette

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November 17, 2013

Tornado wary schools get money for shelters

(Continued)

MOORE, Okla. —

The nonprofit is also giving $100,000 to a small independent district in southwest Oklahoma City, Western Heights.

The nonprofit is still taking donations and passing them to schools. McBride said the group has no administrative costs - funds are held by the Oklahoma City Community Foundation - so all of the money it collects is used to build shelters.

When the storm hit last May, Gov. Mary Fallin said 100 schools in the state - out of 1,752 - had safe rooms or shelters. Yet, Oklahoma is one of the most tornado-prone areas of the country.

Part of "Tornado Alley," the state averages 62 tornadoes per year, according to records kept by the National Climatic Data Center from 1991 to 2010.

It has withstood 7 of the 59 strongest tornadoes - rated F-5 or EF-5, based on damage and wind estimates - that have hit the United States since 1950, according to the National Storm Prediction Center. Those include the May 20 tornado that hit Moore and Oklahoma City.

The group's website is www.shelteroklahomaschools.org.

Joy Hampton writes for The Norman, Okla., Transcript

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