At least one person was killed and 19 others injured when a tornado hit central Mississippi overnight and destroyed up to 30 buildings, officials said.
A tornado touched down in the town of Lewin, about 70 miles east of Jackson, around 11:30 p.m. Sunday, said Eric Carpenter, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Jackson. Mr. Carpenter said several tornadoes could have hit the area overnight, but survey crews were still assessing the damage Monday morning.
Governor Tate Reeves of Mississippi He said on Twitter on Monday Another tornado hit the town of Moss Point in the southern part of the county. “Please be careful,” he said.
No injuries or deaths were reported, Moss Point Mayor Billy Knight Sr. said in an interview. Eight people were trapped inside the bank when its roof collapsed, but all were rescued and unhurt, he said, adding that a church, a high school and part of a baseball field also suffered significant damage. “We’ve had a lot of disasters,” Mayor Knight said. “The next step is to make sure all of our people are safe.”
Many of the city’s roads are “impassable due to water, downed trees and power lines,” according to the Moss Point Police Department. said on Facebook.
George Gene Hayes, 67, who was killed earlier in the tornado in Lewin, was taken from Jasper County to South Central Regional Medical Center in Laurel, Jones County Coroner Dan Sumrall said. Mrs. Hayes was pronounced dead at 2:18 a.m. Monday.
According to Sheriff Randy Johnson in Jasper County, which includes Lewin, the tornado damaged between 20 and 30 structures.
“We have completely destroyed some mobile homes. There are roofs outside the homes,” said Mr. Johnson said, “You know, what do you expect from a strong hurricane?”
Most of the injured are in stable condition or have been released from the emergency room at the Medical Center in Laurel, hospital spokeswoman Peggy Collins said, adding that victims may return to the hospital in the morning.
Governor Reeves said Twitter Emergency crews were conducting search and rescue operations in the area and were using drones in “areas impassable by vehicles due to downed power lines,” he said.
As of Monday morning, nearly 350,000 customers were without power across the South, including more than 35,000 in Mississippi. According to the resistance.usIt aggregates data from applications.
More than 29 million people, mostly in Texas, Louisiana and Mississippi, were under extreme heat warnings.
In the damaged areas, residents – many of them without electricity – had to endure excessive heat, Mr. The heat index was near 105 degrees, Carpenter said, and was even higher elsewhere.
Although people in Mississippi are used to high summer temperatures, the heat index is usually somewhere in the 90s this time of year, Mr. Carpenter said.
“It was really hot,” he said, and with people outside trying to clean up without electricity, “the heat is definitely a concern.”
Temperatures are expected to return to normal in a couple of days. For now, some severe thunderstorm warnings are in effect, as well as river flood warnings due to heavy rainfall.
“Normal summer weather is hot anyway, and now we’re dealing with extra heat,” Mr. Carpenter said.
Video and pictures of the damage in Leuven showed fields destroyed, houses flattened and debris strewn along roads. A video is going viral on social media It showed emergency workers rescuing people from damaged homes in the middle of the night.
“It’s a very interesting weather pattern, especially in June,” Mr. Carpenter said. “In this situation, the jet stream is unusually strong in the area and it creates a springlike atmosphere.”
The fronts hitting the central part of the state were consistent and brought a barrage of chaotic weather including flash floods, Mr. Carpenter said.
Sunday night’s tornadoes killed five people in three states and came less than a week after severe storms lashed parts of the South.
“We’re reaching the end of this crazy system,” Mr. Carpenter said. “What we got last night was, we believe, the last significant event we’ll have to contend with.”
Claire MosesOrlando Mayorquin and Livia Albeck-Ribka Contributed report.