- The Governor of Kentucky says this is “the most devastating tornado in our state’s history.”
- Amazon confirms confirmed deaths at the Illinois facility.
- More than 500,000 power outages were reported.
Several people have died and search and rescue efforts continue after storms and tornadoes, including one that swept through four states, left a catastrophic path of destruction in parts of the South and the Midwest overnight.
A candle factory was destroyed in Kentucky, an Amazon facility was destroyed in Illinois, and a nursing home was attacked in Arkansas. Authorities have confirmed deaths and injuries in all those locations.
Deaths were also confirmed in Tennessee and Missouri.
The four-state tornado passed through parts of Arkansas, Missouri, Tennessee and Kentucky and may have been on the ground for more than 100 miles.
Here are the latest updates:
Dozen people confirmed dead in Bowling Green, Kentucky
At least 12 people were killed in Bowling Green, Kentucky, where roofs were ripped off buildings, trees were uprooted and houses were left splintered in ruins.
Warren County Coroner Kevin Irby confirmed the deaths Saturday afternoon and said children were among the victims.
Photo found in Indiana may have been transported more than 125 miles
A woman in New Albany, Indiana, said she found a photo glued to the window out of your car on Saturday. She posted it on social media and online detectives intervened to help find the owner, according to information written on the back of the black-and-white photograph.
In an update, Katie Posten said that she had been connected to a family member to whom the photo belongs. They are from Dawson Springs, Kentucky, about 127 miles southwest of New Albany, which is just across the Ohio River from Louisville.
Posten is making plans to return the photo later this week.
Bodies torn from the rubble of Candle Factory
Dead bodies have been removed from the ruins of a crushed candle factory in Mayfield, Kentucky, but the exact number is not yet known, Kentucky State Police Sarah Burgess said, according to The Associated Press.
Search and rescue teams were still combing the debris.
“We simply cannot confirm a number at this time because we are still working and we have many agencies involved in helping us,” Burgess said.
He said heavy equipment was being used to move debris and forensic doctors were called to the scene.
Major damage in Bowling Green, Kentucky
Authorities said at least one person died.
Amazon confirms deaths at Illinois facility
“We are deeply saddened by the news that members of our Amazon family passed away as a result of the storm in Edwardsville, Illinois,” Amazon spokeswoman Kelly Nantel said in a statement Saturday, according to The New York Times. . “Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims, their loved ones and all those affected by the tornado.”
Edwardsville police previously said an unspecified number of people were killed when an Amazon building lost its roof and suffered other serious damage Friday night. A wall the size of a football field collapsed on the property, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported.
Edwardsville is about 25 miles east of St. Louis and is home to at least two Amazon warehouses
‘The hardest day of my life’
Local officials at a press conference with Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear were excited to discuss the damage in and around Mayfield.
“This is probably the hardest day of my life,” Graves County Executive Judge Jesse Perry said, his voice cracking. “The only thing I can tell everyone, right now, is what we need from everyone … We need your prayers, we need your help.”
Governor of Kentucky: more than 100 dead feared
“This has been the most devastating tornado in our state’s history … The level of devastation is like nothing I’ve ever seen,” Gov. Andy Beshear said at a news conference in Mayfield around 11 am.
Previously, the governor estimated that between 50 and 100 people died, including at a candle factory in Mayfield, where more than 100 were working when the storm struck late Friday.
“Now I’m sure the number is north of 70. In fact, it may end up exceeding 100 before the day is out,” Beshear said. “The damage is even worse now that we have first light.”
The governor said he expected a federal emergency declaration within an hour.
Drone footage shows the devastation of a nursing home
Parts of the roof and walls were ripped away when a tornado struck the Monette Manor nursing home in Monette, Arkansas, about 20 miles east of Jonesboro.
At least one person died there and five were injured, and an emergency management operator from Craighead County, where the nursing home is located, told weather.com late Friday that there was extensive damage in the area.
At least one other death was confirmed, at a Dollar General store in the nearby city of Leachville.
Half a million power outages nationwide
Around 10:45 a.m., about 500,000 homes and businesses are without power in a band of eight states, from Michigan to Arkansas, according to poweroutage.us. The highest numbers are in Tennessee (143,000), one of the states affected by last night’s severe weather, and Michigan (118,000), which has been hit by high winds.
Where is severe weather heading now?
The storms and tornadoes were part of a winter storm named Atticus by The Weather Channel.
The storm continues to move eastward today, but with a much more isolated tornado and damaging wind threat, weather.com digital meteorologist Jonathan Belles said.
The threat will extend from the deep south to the mid-Atlantic in the morning and afternoon hours.
Read the full forecast here.
Search and Rescue Efforts Underway at Kentucky Candle Factory
Weather Channel meteorologist Chris Bruin said it was difficult to find the words to describe the scene in Mayfield.
“There were tons of vehicles dumped like toys,” Bruin said of the trip to the city, adding that tractor dealerships were destroyed and semi-trailers overturned along the road.
The candle factory, where rescuers are still searching the rubble, is about a mile from the center of town and the damage extends throughout the area.
Mayfield, a city of about 10,000 people, is located in western Kentucky.
Roofs ripped off, buildings missing
Devastating photos are just beginning to show the damage in various states.
State of emergency declared in Kentucky
Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear issued a state of emergency and requested a federal emergency declaration.
Much of Mayfield, Kentucky, flattened
Daytime images are beginning to emerge around 8 a.m. EST, painting a devastating picture of damage in Mayfield, where a candle factory was destroyed, the city’s courthouse was severely damaged, and houses and other buildings were vandalized.
Kentucky Governor Says 50-100 People Are Likely To Die
“It has been one of the toughest nights in Kentucky history and some areas have been affected in ways that are difficult to put into words,” Gov. Andy Beshear said at a news conference.
More than 100 people worked in a factory in Mayfield that was destroyed.
“There were about 110 people at the time the tornado hit it,” Beshear said. “We believe that we will lose at least dozens of those people. It is very difficult, really difficult, and we are praying for each and every one of those families ”.
Hundreds of thousands without electricity
More than 300,000 power outages were reported in eight states as of 7:13 a.m. EST, according to poweroutage.us. The largest number, 137,000, is in Tennessee, followed by 71,000 in Kentucky, 34,000 in Illinois, 31,000 in Indiana and 25,000 in Arkansas.
Confirmed deaths in Amazon Warehouse
Police in Edwardsville, Illinois, say there are deaths at the Amazon warehouse that was vandalized during the storms. The exact number is not yet known.
Storm debris blocks road at Nashville airport
The road to the exits at Nashville International Airport was blocked by debris and closed early Saturday, according to a tweet from the airport.
Winter storms can have a severe side
The storm, named Atticus by The Weather Channel, is bringing severe weather, high winds, snow and rain as it moves east.
It delivered the first measurable snow of the season on Thursday and Friday in areas like Salt Lake City and Denver. Snow was estimated to be as high as one meter at some points in the mountains of southern Wyoming and Colorado.
In Minnesota, the state patrol responded to more than 136 crashes at 4 p.m. Friday and more than 200 flights were canceled in Minneapolis-St. Paul Airport. More than 20 inches of snow fell in some areas, including the Twin Cities.
On the warmer side of the storm, parts of the Deep South, including the Tennessee and Ohio valleys, could rack up more than an inch of rain through Saturday.
It is not unusual for severe weather to accompany a winter storm.
“Winter storms often produce strong to severe thunderstorms by drawing humid, warm, buoyant air north from the Gulf of Mexico,” said weather.com meteorologist Jonathan Belles. “Those thunderstorms are fed by the jet stream that feeds the storm system, getting taller and steeper, and the storms are eventually pushed around by a change in the winds from the ground to the level of the jet stream. “.
Click here to see what happened when storms and tornadoes hit on Friday night and early Saturday morning.
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