At least three dead, dozens of homes damaged after storms hit US


Tornadoes and thunderstorms hit the U.S. Midwest and South on Sunday, leaving dozens of homes damaged and at least three people dead in Indiana and Arkansas, authorities said on Monday.

The National Weather Service said multiple tornadoes and severe storms were reported on Sunday in central Indiana and Arkansas.

Emergency officials from Martin County, Indiana, confirmed one death in the area. Emergency Management Director Cameron Wolf said the victim’s injured partner was airlifted to hospital. They lived in a two-storey log cabin, which was destroyed by the storms. Further details were not immediately available.

“Damage is random, it’s kind of widespread,” Wolf said in an interview to PBS. The damage mostly happened out in the country side, he said, adding that towns were not hit that hard by the storms.

The Lonoke County Sheriff’s Office confirmed that two people were killed after a tree fell on a home in Carlisle, Arkansas, due to severe storms on Sunday, a CBS News affiliate said.

Images and footage from local media showed fallen trees had blocked roads and homes were damaged. A large hail storm was also reported in Indiana and adjacent states, officials said.

Fire Chief Eric Funkhouser from the town of Bargersville, south of Indianapolis, said that while no casualties were reported there, about 75 homes sustained moderate to severe damage after the weather, according an NBC News affiliate.

Emergency shelters were set up in central Indiana for those whose homes were damaged and destroyed.

As of Monday morning, about half a million utility customers faced power outages due to the weather in the U.S. Midwest and South, according to outage tracking website PowerOutage.us.

At least one person died and about two dozen people were injured after a tornado hit central Mississippi a week ago.

A dangerous heat wave had also recently helped spawn deadly tornadoes in Texas and Florida, where at least four people were killed this month in twisters that touched down in the panhandles of the states. Flooding forced almost 150 people out of their homes. —Reuters

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