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PLATTEVILLE, Colo. (KDVR) — Neighbors just outside of Firestone and in Platteville were feeling thankful Monday night after being spared damage from a massive tornado that blasted through the area.

“Once I saw the tornado, I thought, ‘OK, let’s go.’ Didn’t close the house or garage — just left it open to get out of the way,” said Bob Ulmer, who was at home during the tornado.

Ulmer said he was watching TV when he heard the door blow open, and he stepped outside to find the massive twister less than two miles from his home.

He said the home he stays in doesn’t have a basement, so he grabbed his dog and jumped in his truck and headed toward Firestone, opposite of the direction the tornado was heading.

“It was way over there, then it went that way, then it went straight north, which was good, ’cause I was already heading west,” Ulmer said.

Just 15 minutes northeast of Ulmer’s home, Morgan Hurla and her family watched in horror as the tornado grew and turned toward their neighborhood.

“That’s when it started moving to the northwest area, and it got bigger to the size that it was,” Hurla said.

Hurla said she knew things were getting serious when her dad said they needed to get to the basement. The tornado sirens were blaring throughout the community.

She said her dad ran to their elderly neighbor’s home to help her to her basement before going in to his own.

“Once it got bigger, you could smell the dirt and just see how bad it was, and then it started raining,” Hurla said.

The 7-Eleven in Platteville also expected the worst as they saw the tornado heading towards their store. The manager there told FOX31 and Channel 2 they shut off the gasoline pumps in case of impact.



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