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WTVA Meteorologist Orders Staffers to the Basement as Tornado Sweeps Through Tupelo

Employees at WTVA, the NBC affiliate in Tupelo, were forced to seek shelter during a live broadcast this afternoon as a tornado approached the area (video above).

“This is a tornado emergency for Lee County,” chief meteorologist Matt Laubhan said moments before the evacuation. “This is a tornado ripping through the city of Tupelo as we speak. And this could be deadly.”

Around 3 p.m., Laubhan informed viewers that the station, which was reportedly running on backup power, was sheltering most people, “except the absolutely essential staff.”

The station later tweeted, “We are safe here.”

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