Tornadoes cross Mississippi, killing at least 25 people

Rescuers searched the rubble on Saturday after a powerful storm ripped through Mississippi overnight, killing at least 25 people there and another in Alabama, flattening dozens of buildings and spawning at least one devastater. tornado.
The tornado remained on the ground for about an hour and carved out a path of destruction about 170 miles (274 km) long, according to preliminary information, said Nicholas Price, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Jackson, Mississippi.
Video taken in the hardest-hit town of Rolling Fork, a town of 1,700 in western Mississippi, shows houses reduced to rubble, tree trunks snapped like twigs and discarded cars next to. The town’s water tower lay twisted on the ground.
Governor Tate Reeves, who visited the tornado-hit town of Silver City, declared a state of emergency in the affected areas.
“The scale of the damage and loss is evident wherever it is impacted today,” he wrote on Twitter. “Homes, businesses…entire communities.”
In Alabama, which was also hit by the same storm system, rescuers pulled a man out of the mud when his trailer overturned, but the man died from his injuries, according to the county sheriff’s office. of Morgan. It appeared to be the only death reported in that state on Saturday afternoon.
US President Joe Biden called the Mississippi footage “heartbreaking” and said in a statement that he spoke with Reeves and offered his condolences and full federal support for the recovery.
“To those affected by these devastating storms, as well as first responders and emergency personnel working to help fellow Americans, we will do whatever we can to help,” Biden said. “We’ll be here as long as it takes. We’ll work together to provide the support you need to recover.”
Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Director Deanne Criswell will travel to Mississippi on Sunday, the White House announced. Criswell told CNN that FEMA already has personnel on the ground and the American Red Cross is helping set up shelters for people whose homes have been destroyed.
“My town is gone”
The Mississippi Emergency Management Agency said Saturday afternoon the death toll had risen to 25, with dozens injured. Four people who had been reported missing earlier have been located, the agency said.
At least 12 of those deaths have occurred in Rolling Fork, its mayor, Eldridge Walker, told CNN earlier today.
“My town is gone, but we’re resilient,” Walker said on CNN. “We will come back strong.”
Jarrett Brown, a volunteer with disaster response organization Team Rubicon who traveled to Rolling Fork, told Reuters the damage showed the storm was unavoidable for some residents.
“In some of these areas there was no safe place to go,” he said via video call.
Jeremy McCoy, a constable from nearby Yazoo County who had traveled to Rolling Fork to assist with rescue efforts, told CNN of the grim situation on the ground and walked on nails in the rubble.
“I’ve never seen anything like it,” McCoy said. “You hope to hear someone calling, a baby crying, a dog barking or something like that, but you don’t hear anything.”
Tim and Tracy Harden, owners of Chuck’s Dairy Barn in Rolling Fork, said in a Facebook post that they hid in a small cooler a minute before the tornado demolished their building.
“Forever grateful to the client with the broken arm who carried on and freed us all from the cooler,” they wrote.
The National Weather Service deployed crews to assess the damage and determine how many tornadoes touched down, according to Price, the meteorologist.
At least 24 reports of tornadoes, stretching from western Mississippi to Alabama, were passed on to the National Weather Service Friday night and Saturday morning by storm chasers and spotters.


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