At least 70 people have died after 22 tornadoes hit six U.S. states on Friday and over the weekend. Some of the worst destruction was seen in the state of Kentucky. A candle factory in the city of Mayfield was destroyed after a roof collapsed, trapping an estimated 110 employees inside.
As of Saturday local time, 40 people have been rescued, with the rest still missing. According to Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear “the storm event was the longest tornado track on record and the largest in Kentucky history.” A state of emergency has been declared in Kentucky, with 56,000 people in the state without power. The Kentucky National Guard has been deployed to assist communities.
The National Weather Service’s Storm Prediction Center has received at least 36 reports of tornadoes, affecting the states of Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee, Missouri, Mississippi, and Arkansas.
In the state of Illinois, a roof from an Amazon warehouse collapsed, killing six people and trapping several employees. Two people (including a child) were also killed in their St. Charles County home in the state of Missouri. In the state of Arkansas, at least one person was killed and five have been seriously injured. There have also been four storm-related deaths in the state of Tennessee.
“This morning, I was briefed on the devastating tornadoes across the central U.S. To lose a loved one in a storm like this is an unimaginable tragedy. We’re working with Governors to ensure they have what they need as the search for survivors and damage assessments continue.” — U.S. President Joe Biden