(NEWSER) – As frantic search and rescue efforts continue in Moore, Oklahoma, officials warn that the death toll from yesterday's horrific tornado strike is expected to rise steeply. The toll in the Oklahoma City suburb laid waste by the two-mile wide twister now stands at 91 but a spokeswoman for the state medical examiner's office says around 40 more bodies are expected, CNN reports. The destruction is "the worst thing I have ever seen," a highway patrol trooper tells the Oklahoman. "We hope that we don't have any more fatalities, but we know there are a lot more people trapped tonight ."
The death toll includes at least 20 children, some of them from the Plaza Towers Elementary School destroyed by what appears to have been a direct hit. As the tornado hit the school, first-grade teacher Becky Jo Evans desperately tried to save her students by moving them into a bathroom and then throwing herself over them as the walls collapsed, a friend of the teacher tells the Los Angeles Times. Evans then helped pull children from the destroyed building, though some of them may still be missing.