At least 23 dead as massive tornado rips through US town, toll likely to rise
The videos from the impacted locations are doing rounds on social media where the extent of damage is clearly visible
At least 23 people were killed and many were injured as a strong tornado and thunderstorms ripped through the state of Mississippi in the United States. After the tornado, four people are reportedly missing and the emergency management agency of the state informed that the tornado left a trail of damage for more than 100 miles (160 km).
The Mississippi Emergency Management Agency which is managing the aftermath of the situation expects the death toll to rise. "Unfortunately, these numbers are expected to change," it said, referring to the death count.
Storm chasers and observers reported no fewer than 24 tornadoes to the National Weather Service on Friday evening and early Saturday morning. These reports covered a broad geographical area, extending from the western boundary of Mississippi all the way north through the state's center and into Alabama.
Images of devastation released by news networks depicted complete structures reduced to debris and automobiles toppled onto their sides, with individuals making their way through the wreckage in the absence of illumination.
"Many in the MS Delta need your prayer and God's protection tonight," Governor Tate Reeve said in a tweet.
"We have activated medical support-surging more ambulances and other emergency assets for those affected. Search and rescue is active," Reeve added.
A local Brandy Showah told CNN that there were people still trapped inside their houses. "My friend was trapped in her home a few houses down, but we got her out," she said.
"I've never seen anything like this, this was a very great small town, and now it's gone," Showah added.
With inputs from Reuters
Unlock a world of Benefits! From insightful newsletters to real-time stock tracking, breaking news and a personalized newsfeed – it's all here, just a click away! Login Now!