At Least 14 Dead in Alabama After Tornadoes Strike the Southeast, Official Says


The first twister warning in central Alabama went out round 1 p.m. Sunday. In the hours that adopted, a cluster of storms ripped by way of the Southeast, spawning a number of tornadoes, killing a minimum of 14 and leaving a path of rubble.

Tornadoes have been reported in Alabama, Georgia and Florida. The 14 reported deaths have been all in Lee County, Ala., the place two tornadoes — one a minimum of a half-mile large — wrecked houses and uprooted bushes. Dozens of individuals have been despatched to hospitals, and search-and-rescue groups continued to comb by way of the broken areas.

More than 150 individuals have been a part of the search-and-rescue operations close to the Lee County communities of Smiths Station and Beauregard, which is about 60 miles east of Montgomery, stated Rita Smith, a spokeswoman for the county’s emergency administration company.

Sheriff Jay Jones of Lee County stated in an interview with CNN that 14 individuals have been killed. The East Alabama Medical Center in Opelika, Ala., had acquired greater than 40 sufferers and anticipated extra, stated John Atkinson, a spokesman for the heart. He stated the circumstances of the sufferers various.

“There’s debris laying everywhere,” he said. “There was a mobile home frame in the middle of the road at one time. There’s personal belongings in the trees. There’s insulation, there’s building material in the trees.”

Meredith Wyatt, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Birmingham, Ala., said the strong line of storms moved quickly across the area on Sunday afternoon.

She said it was unclear how many tornadoes touched down but said the service issued at least six warnings on Sunday afternoon.

The service will send teams on Monday to survey the damage to determine the path of the tornadoes, their intensity and how long they stayed on the ground.

Nearly eight years after a tornado outbreak that devastated major cities and small towns alike, Alabama remains wary of severe weather and the menace of tornadoes.

After the 2011 outbreak, which spawned more than 60 tornadoes in Alabama and led to more than 230 fatalities in the state, some communities ordered upgrades to storm shelters, and residents became extraordinarily sensitive about even the threat of poor weather.



Source link Nytimes.com

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