3 University of Oklahoma School of Meteorology students killed in crash (UPDATE)

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Original article: According to a tweet posted by KFOR’s Mike Morgan, 3 University of Oklahoma School of Meteorology students were killed in a crash near the Kansas/OK border. You can read the tweet Morgan posted below: 

“Our most sincere and heartfelt condolences to the family and friends of OU Meteorology students who were killed in a tragic crash on I-35 last night near the Kansas/Oklahoma border. We are OU family.”

Mike Morgan (@MikeMorganKFOR)
Morgan is the Chief Meteorologist for KFOR in case you didn’t know.

Tributes have been pouring in on Twitter for the OU Meteorology students who died. You can read several of them below: 

“My thoughts and prayers go to the family and friends of the 3 students at this time. Hard to put something like this in words…”

Jamie Simms, Discover Tornadoes website lead

Since this is a developing story, we will update this article once more details emerge. We will report this crash appropriately, no rumours will be printed.

RELATED: Storm chaser’s apartment hit by Andover, Kansas tornado yesterday (UPDATE)


Update: More information about the crash has emerged online (source). Read below:

3 Students at the School of meteorology at the University of Oklahoma died in a car crash last night after hydroplaning on the southbound I-35 near the Kansas border. Nicholas Nair, 20, Gavin Short, 19, and Drake Brooks, 22 were the three students who died in the crash. 

The Oklahoma Highway Patrol (OHP) said the crash happened in Tonkawa, OK in Kay County around 11:00pm near the OK-KS border. The vehicle, driven by Nair, was travelling southbound on I-35 when it hydroplaned and left the roadway, according to the OHP. 

OHP said in a news release that after leaving the roadway, their vehicle made is back onto the road, but became disabled and started to block the outside lane. A semitruck (travelling southbound) hit the disabled vehicle. 

Fair, Short and Brooks were pinned in their vehicle for almost 5 and a half hours, according to the OHP’s news release. Tonkawa Fire and EMS were finally able to remove the 3 students from their vehicle using the jaws of life tool. 

OHP said Nair, Short, and Brooks were pronounced dead on the scene and transported by the Medical Examiner to the Medical Examiner’s Office in Oklahoma City. The driver of the semitruck was taken to the hospital and has since been treated and released, according to the OHP.


Update #2: The School of Meteorology at the University of Oklahoma have released a statement following the deaths of the 3 students (source). You can read their statement below:

“Earlier today, the OU School of Meteorology received devastating news that three of our students were involved in a fatal car crash last night. We have spent the past several hours working to confirm the information, all in hopes that what we learned early today was false. We have since learned the reports we received were accurate, and university officials are in communication with the families. 

We are deeply saddened and our sincerest condolences go out to all affected families and friends. This news comes at a time in the semester when we are diligently preparing for the close of our studies and celebrating our graduates. Our leadership and faculty stand ready to support each of our community members in the days, weeks, and months ahead as we all grieve this unthinkable heartbreak. Please remember that the University Counseling Center is available to provide support for those in need. We encourage you to seek that help if needed. 

Our community in Atmospheric and Geographic Sciences is close-knit, and our School of Meteorology is very much a family. Now, more than ever, we must come together in kindness and heartfelt support for one another. Please join  us in offering thoughts and prayers for those most impacted, and providing them with privacy.” 


Update #3: The National Weather Service in Norman, OK dedicated yesterday’s evening weather balloon launch to the 3 students who died. You can watch the balloon release in the video below:


Update #4: A photo of the 3 students who died in the crash has emerged online. See below:


Stay tuned to Discover Tornadoes for more tornado news, information, and more. 

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