Tornado ravages St. Louis Airport, devastating concourse
On April 22, a tornado swept though Lambert-St. Louis International Airport , severely damaging Concourse C, one of the airport’s busiest terminals. Although there were no casualties, four people were injured.
Lambert spokesmen Jeff Lea said the storm ripped the roof off the concourse, shattering windows in the gate area and parking garage. “We had a vacuum effect, when the wind sucked anything that moved down the concourse,” Lea said in a statement.
Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon declared Missouri a state of emergency, enabling state agencies to join the relief efforts. St. Louis City and St. Louis County emergency management teams worked around the clock to expedite the clean-up process and assess the damage to the airport.
Closed indefinitely on Saturday, Lambert has since resumed 70 percent of its flights. Eleven carriers flew out on Sunday, April 24, and American Airlines recommenced service on Monday. Cape Air, the last airline to resume its flight schedule, will begin service on Tuesday.
The C Concourse will remain closed due to the extensive damage it sustained. AirTran and Frontier airlines, which previously flew out of that gate, have been rerouted to gates B12 and B10, respectively. Several unused D gates have also been opened to carriers previously operating out of Concourse C.
Lambert Director Rhonda Hamm-Niebruegge attributes the airport’s speedy recovery process to the efforts of many. “We give tremendous credit to [St. Louis electric company] Ameren for restoring service to Lambert so that the airport could open just 24 hours after the devastating tornado,” she said in a statement. “Thanks also has to go to the numerous crews and workers who have worked with the airport to clean up and make emergency repairs to get where we are today.”
For up-to-date information regarding Lambert-St. Louis International Airport, visit www.flystl.com .