2 zoo animals killed by softball-sized hail; 14 people injured

Softball-sized hail pummels Cheyenne Mountain Zoo

Motswari, a 13-year-old Cape vulture, was killed in the storm, the zoo said, along with a 4-year-old Muscovy duck named Daisy.

The Cheyenne Mountain Zoo in Colorado Springs said that "two of our animals have passed away due to trauma sustained during the hail storm".

A busy United States zoo has been closed as officials assessed damage from a severe hail storm that sent five people to the hospital and killed two zoo birds.

About 3,400 people were at the zoo at the time, and dozens of vehicles in the parking lot were damaged.

A Flash Flood Watch is in effect through Tuesday night for areas near Colorado Springs and to the south.

Large hailstones injured at least eight people at Cheyenne Mountain Zoo.

"It was hail the size I've never seen before", said Jenny Koch, marketing director of the zoo, to The Denver Post.

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Buses were taking people from the zoo to the high school and as of 5:45 p.m. about three busloads of people remained at the zoo waiting for evacuation.

The zoo announced on Twitter it will be closed on Tuesday for cleanup.

Parts of El Paso County, where Colorado Springs is located, were hammered with hail Monday afternoon. No one was allowed to drive their cars out of the parking lots due to safety concerns.

The storm also knocked out power to almost 2,000 customers and washed debris onto U.S. Highway 24 west of Manitou Springs.

Guests at the zoo mainly took shelter on their own under whatever was nearby, the spokesperson said.

The Broadmoor Hotel and resort also was pounded by hail, and staff members were assessing damage. Additional details about the victims and their injuries have not been released.

None of the children attending zoo camp were injured.

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