Small Arkansas town hit hard by EF-1 tornado Saturday night

Five homes were destroyed and about 15 were damaged in White County after a tornado hit the area.

ROMANCE, Ark. — After severe storms moved through the state Saturday night, one town is now facing the aftermath of a confirmed EF-1 tornado.

Several families in Romance, Arkansas spent their Sunday morning cleaning up after the tornado touched down in their city. 

According to White County Emergency Management Director, Tamara Jenkins, five homes were destroyed and about 15 were damaged in White County. 

Carolyn Coughlin described the storm as something that “sprung up on them.”

“We didn’t have no warning, there was no warning,” she said. 

The tornado that touched down late Saturday night left families in Romance, Arkansas to experience the unimaginable. 

Coughlin found her mom buried underneath the roof and walls of her own home.

“It was really hard seeing my mom lying there, helpless,” she said. 

Coughlin’s mother was one of the four injured and two rescued in White County, according to Jenkins. 

“So far, from what I understand, everyone is doing better today. I won’t say okay, but they’re doing better today,” she said. 

Jenkins was called a little after 1 a.m. on Sunday to survey the damage.

“There were reports of missing people, property damage, houses destroyed,” she said. 

The storm left sheds torn apart, homes rolled off their foundations, and children’s toys scattered throughout the yard. 

Dennis Cavanaugh, the warning coordination meteorologist for the National Weather Service in Little Rock, said the storm’s path stuck to four main roads.

“It was a very concentrated area of damage. It’s not really widespread,” he said. 

No matter the severity, the city of Romance rallied together to help pick up the damage on Sunday morning piece by piece.

“When somebody’s been affected by a disaster, big or small, the neighborhood comes together, the community comes together and they get it done. They take care of people,” Jenkins said. 

Anyone that still has sustained damage can call the White County 911 Communications at (501) 279 – 6241. 

Cavanaugh wants to remind everyone that bad weather can happen at any time here in Arkansas. 

Remember to always have a plan in place for your family before a storm approaches.