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Storm Warning Went Out Minutes Before Child Killed at Summer Camp

Forecasters issued a warning to take shelter minutes before a severe thunderstorm knocked down a tree and killed a child at a Maryland summer camp. The warning went out at 6:39 p.m. Tuesday, said Chris Strong, warning coordination meteorologist for the National Weather Service in Baltimore and Washington. The worst of the storm was over the camp at 6:55, he said. It was not clear whether the camp or counselors were aware of the severe thunderstorm warning. The camp's executive director was to address reporters Wednesday afternoon.

Besides the child who was killed, eight children were injured as they were being hustled toward safety at the camp, River Valley Ranch in Manchester. About 100 children were in an open-air pavilion when camp staff noticed the approaching thunderstorm and tried to get the children into a building nearby, authorities said. The thunderstorm was part of a destructive line that marched across the East on Tuesday night. Strong said a severe thunderstorm watch, indicating the possibility of strong storms, was issued at 5:06 p.m. for an area covering central Maryland.

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