Missouri residents struggled through a fourth straight day of storms on Tuesday, fighting floodwaters that inundated homes, forced evacuations and closed highways and even part of the Mississippi River. A week of chaotic weather continued throughout the United States as a storm system that created deadly tornadoes in the Midwest and Southwest pushed north. More than 40 people have died of weather-related causes during the Christmas holidays in the past week. Adding to the misery, the U.S. Geological Survey reported that two mild earthquakes-- 4.1 and 3.4 magnitude -- rattled central Oklahoma early on Tuesday, causing power outages in an area already hit by winter storms.
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Sheila Samples is an Oklahoma writer and a former civilian US Army Public Information Officer. She is a Managing Editor for OpEd News, and a regular contributor for a variety of Internet sites.