Just two days before Christmas, Americans across the the country are reeling under the threat of severe weather as a storm system threatens areas from the Mississippi Valley to the Ohio Valley. The storm system also resulted in a massive tornado that touched down in northwest Mississippi. According to an ABC News report, the tornado has destroyed at least 20 homes. No injuries or deaths have been reported from there.
However, in Arkansas, another tornado resulted in the death of an 18-year-old woman. The unidentified woman was killed after a tree fell on to the house she was in. A one-year-old baby was also trapped in the incident — who was later rescued. According to Pope County Sheriff Shane Jones, the 18-year-old woman was killed when a tree crashed into her bedroom. The infant has been identified as her baby sister. Both of them were sleeping in a bedroom of the house located near Atkins, about 65 miles northwest of Little Rock, when the tornado hit.
“It’s terrible that this happened, especially at Christmas,” Jones said.
In Mississippi however, the only confirmed casualty as of now is a dog that was killed by storm debris, a news confirmed by Clarksdale Mayor Bill Luckett. Bill further added,
“I’m looking at some horrific damage right now. Sheet metal wrapped is around trees, there are overturned airplanes, a building is just destroyed.”
There are also reports coming in of small airplanes being flipped over at an airport. Several people have been injured there as well.
A video of a tornado was also posted to YouTube.
Local TV stations broadcasted images of the tornado which they say was on the ground for at least 10 minutes. The tornado also resulted in the Mississippi Highway Patrol closing the interstate 55 in both the directions.
People have taken to Twitter, live tweeting images and videos of the tornadoes they saw.
— The Weather Channel (@weatherchannel) December 23, 2015
— Breaking911 (@Breaking911) December 23, 2015
Thoughts and prayers to the folks in Northern Mississippi today after the tornado hit.
— SPHL Nation (@SPHL_Nation) December 23, 2015
Tornado in Mississippi today?
— Kenny Bout It, Not U (@Flyer_thanu2) December 23, 2015
— P. (@chillin662) December 23, 2015
Authorities are particularly concerned about debris caused by Christmas yard decorations that could end up becoming dangerous projectiles. Thousands of people are reportedly without power in several areas across Indiana and Arkansas thanks to strong winds toppling down power lines, knocking down trees and toppling tractor-trailers.
According to a bulletin issued by the National Storm Prediction Center in Oklahoma, several densely populated regions across Mississippi, Tennessee, and Arkansas and parts of Missouri, Illinois, and Kentucky are under the threat of several tornadoes.
Meanwhile, a flood watch was posted by the National Weather Service on Friday evening in several parts of Georgia, including Atlanta where more than 4 inches of rain is expected.
Mississippi was hit by tornadoes last year as well. Back then, the storms resulted in the death of four people and left several injured.
[Image Via Wikimedia Commons]