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UPDATE: Tornado injures three outside Canadian

Published: May. 28, 2015 at 12:47 AM CDT|Updated: May. 29, 2015 at 12:17 AM CDT
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Amarillo, TX - Two men injured in the tornado striking a drilling rig near Canadian remain in critical condition.

It was an eventful Wednesday in Canadian, with tornadoes and flooding. Today, officials are assessing the damage. Multiple tornadoes swept through areas just north of Canadian. But it only took the brief touchdown of one, which happened just northwest of Canadian on HWY 83, to cause emergency crews to respond.

Just a little after 5 in the afternoon, responders were dispatched to the Cactus Drilling Rig, 121 near Nix Ranch, where they had reports men were injured and trapped by flooding waters."The road that we actually use to get to these guys at the rig location was washed away," Sheriff James Pearson, said.

"So we had an incident out there where there were some of those guys that were kind of trapped on a sand bar. Luckily we have a gentleman here where he came out with his helicopter. He came out and rescued these guys from that area. There were four guys and two vehicles."The men were rescued, however three others weren't so lucky and didn't have proper shelter." My understanding of it, through talking to some of the guys out there last night, they were in whatever form of shelter they had," Pearson said.

"They were there, for whatever reasons, and reasons unknown these three individuals did not stay in that shelter. That's my understanding of it and they were caught up in the storm."

He adds they retreated to their trailer homes. One of the men was treated at a Hemphill County hospital and released last night. Two others remain in critical condition. The Sheriff said one suffered an impalement from something like a 2 by 4 board and is in critical condition at an Amarillo hospital. The other suffers a crushed pelvis and was transferred from a hospital in Amarillo to Lubbock.

The rig is owned by Apache, and the rig hands work for Weatherford. The companies released these statements: Apache: "The well is secured and no other damage was reported.our thoughts are with all those affected."Weatherford: "Our top priority is working with the families of those involved with Wednesday's events to ensure they have access to the necessary resources. Out of respect for the families, we will not release further details at this time."

We do not have official confirmation of the victims names, and will not release those at this time. The Sheriff said because of heavy rainfall, the Canadian river is flooded and he asks for people to stay away from the sweeping waters.