JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) -- Gov. Jay Nixon has declared a disaster because of severe storms that caused significant damage in the southern Missouri.
Nixon issued a disaster declaration Wednesday. The declaration allows the State Emergency Management Agency, Missouri State Highway Patrol and other state agencies to help local officials with emergency response. Shelters also have been set up for residents affected by the storms in Branson, Buffalo, Kimberling City and Lebanon.
The governor's office says initial reports indicate injuries and widespread damage in southern Missouri, including significant damage to business and tourist areas in Branson. The severe weather started Tuesday night and continued into the early morning Wednesday.