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1 dead, 100 injured in St. Louis tent collapse during violent storm

ST. LOUIS, Mo. -- A storm blasting through the city blew away a tent outside a downtown bar, leaving one man dead Saturday afternoon, NBC station KSDK reported.

Twenty others -- three in critical condition -- were taken to a hospital after the incident at Kilroy’s Sports Bar on South Seventh Street, a couple of blocks south of Busch Stadium, KSDK reported. A total of 100 people received medical treatment, KSDK said. Photos showed the tent impaled on a nearby railroad trestle.

It was not clear whether the man who died was struck during the incident or went into cardiac arrest because of shock, officials said.

St. Louis Fire Chief Dennis Jenkerson told KSDK that a few hundred people were celebrating in the tent after the Cardinals' 7-3 victory over the Milwaukee Brewers when the storm hit.

"We've got severe injuries to quite a few people," Jenkerson said, noting live wires were left on the ground after the tarp tied to galvanized pipes blew away. "We don't like this type of building. It gives us nightmares, and as you can see, it caused one."

The pipes "beat up" many of the people in the tent, Jenkerson said.

The tent was set up as a beer garden next to Kilroy's, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported.

Eddie Roth, director of the St. Louis Department of Public Safety, said the tent had passed inspection and it didn't appear there would be any violation, although an investigation would continue, The Associated Press reported.

"I thought a train fell off the track," Art Randall, Kilroy's owner, told the Post-Dispatch. "We all ducked for cover. Everything was going sideways. I had metal chairs ripping across the beer garden."

"People were pushing and shoving," said Christy Eilermann, 42, of St. Louis, the Post-Dispatch reported. "The wind just picked up and they started dragging people inside."

Storms packing hail up to baseball-size hail slammed eastern Missouri and western Illinois on Saturday.

Weather spotters in O’Fallen, Baden and Lebanon, Ill., reported baseball-size hail, 2.75 inches, smashing car windshields and home windows at 4:22 CDT.

The National Weather Service issued tornado warnings for parts of Daviess, Knox and Martin counties in southwest Indiana and severe thunderstorm warnings for east-central Missouri and south-central Illinois.

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