At least 26 dead after strong tornadoes hit Midwest and South in US


Our Bureau


Storms that dropped possibly dozens of tornadoes killed at least 26 people in small towns and big cities across the South and Midwest, tearing a path through the Arkansas capital, collapsing the roof of a packed concert venue in Illinois and shocking people throughout the region.

Confirmed or suspected tornadoes in at least 8 states destroyed homes and businesses, splintered trees, power lines and laid waste to neighbourhoods across a broad swath of the country. The dead included at least 9 in one Tennessee county, 4 in the small town of Wynne, Arkansas, 3 in Sullivan, Indiana, and 4 in Illinois.

Other deaths from the storms that hit Friday night into Saturday were reported in Alabama and Mississippi, along with one near Little Rock, Arkansas, where city officials said more than 2,600 buildings were in a tornado’s path.

Residents of Wynne, a community of about 8,000 people 50 miles (80 kms) west of Memphis, Tennessee, woke on Saturday to find the high school’s roof shredded and its windows blown out. Huge trees lay on the ground, their stumps reduced to nubs. Broken walls, windows and roofs pocked homes and businesses. Debris lay scattered inside the shells of homes and on lawns: clothing, insulation, toys, splintered furniture, a pickup truck with its windows shattered.

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