At least 50 dead after tornadoes hit multiple states: live updates

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Credit…Brett Carlsen / Getty Images

Dozens feared death, and communities across the Midwestern and Southern United States scrambled to assess the damage on Saturday morning after a series of unusually strong storms and tornadoes for the season swept through five states. overnight.

Officials said there were “confirmed deaths” after a roof collapsed at an Amazon warehouse in Illinois, three died in Tennessee and at least one in a nursing home Arkansas nurses. The governor of Kentucky said at least 50 people were killed on the path of a tornado of more than 200 miles, and the death toll in the state is likely to rise to more than 70 in the next few hours.

“Dawn is going to bring more difficult news,” Governor Andy Beshear said during a press briefing. “It was one of the toughest nights in Kentucky history,” he added. “Some areas have been affected in a way that is difficult to describe. “

At least five states were affected by tornadoes Friday night, including Arkansas, Illinois, Kentucky, Missouri and Tennessee, said Bill Bunting, chief of operations at the Storm Prediction Center, part of the National Weather Service.

He said the tornadoes were part of a weather system that was wreaking havoc in many parts of the country, causing heavy snowfall in parts of the upper Midwest and western Great Lakes.

Police and rescue workers responded to reports that the roof of an Amazon warehouse had collapsed in Edwardsville, Illinois.

The Edwardsville Police Department said early Saturday that the storms, which began around 8:30 p.m. Friday, had caused “catastrophic damage to a significant portion” of the Amazon warehouse. A search and rescue operation was underway and the next of kin have been notified, police said.

In Tennessee, two people died in Lake County and one in Obion County, in the western part of the state, said Dean Flener, spokesperson for the Tennessee Emergency Management Agency.

As of Saturday morning, more than 132,000 homes were without power in Tennessee, nearly 60,000 in Kentucky, more than 25,000 in Arkansas, nearly 24,000 in Illinois and nearly 10,000 in Missouri, according to reports compiled by PowerOutage.us.

A tornado hit an Arkansas nursing home, Monette Manor in the town of Monette, around 8:15 p.m. Friday, prompting a major response from area police and rescue workers, according to Marvin Day, a county judge. Craighead.

Search and rescue officers found one person dead and five who had been seriously injured, Mr Day said, correcting an earlier report that at least two people were killed. He said other residential buildings in the area were also damaged.

“It’s really heartbreaking,” he said.

The damage in Arkansas came after a severe thunderstorm produced a tornado that tore through the area, according to the National Weather Service. At 9:17 p.m., the storm was near Trumann, Ark., And was moving northeast at 55 miles per hour, bringing with it a quarter-sized tornado and hail, the Weather Service said. .

“Remember, there are people affected by all of these tornadoes,” Craig Ceecee, meteorologist and graduate student at Mississippi State University, said on twitter late Friday as he tracked tornadoes across Kentucky. “Communities are hit hard. And we won’t know how bad it is until morning. We must think and pray for those who are affected.

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