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Death Toll Over 50 as Tornadoes Rip Through Heartland

Kentucky, Illinois, Tennessee, Arkansas and Missouri were all impacted

Tornadoes and severe weather impacted several states Friday night into the early hours of Saturday morning. The storms left in their wake multiple deaths, numerous injuries and severe structural damages, according to widespread reports.

Affected states included Illinois, Missouri, Arkansas, Tennessee and Kentucky.

Major incidents included heavy damage to an Amazon warehouse in Edwardsville, Illinois, where two people are confirmed dead and dozens of workers were reportedly trapped inside the building, and the destruction of a nursing home in Arkansas, where at least two people were killed and five were hurt.

However, the worst impact is in Kentucky, where Gov. Andy Beshear has warned residents that as many as 100 people may have been killed.


An Amazon warehouse located just across the Mississippi River from St. Louis collapsed. The incident is being called a “mass casualty incident” by local responders. At least 30 people were bussed away from the scene to be reunited with family, officials said. However, as many as 100 employees were thought to be inside the building at the time. This story is still developing.


In St. Charles County, to the west of St. Louis, at least one person was killed and three injured when a tornado struck in the town of Defiance, according to local station FOX 2.


In Craighead County, emergency responders were dealing with a tragedy at the Monette Manor Nursing Home in Monette, FOX 16 of Little Rock reported.

At least 20 people were initially trapped inside the building after a suspected tornado struck, the report said. The damage left at least two people dead and five hurt.

The nursing home’s roof was ripped off and other buildings in town were also damaged, according to FOX 16.


At least two people were confirmed dead in Obion County, Tennessee, after dangerous storms tore through the area, FOX 17 of Nashville reported. There are no details at this time on how the deaths occurred.


Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear warned residents early Saturday that the tornado death toll there may exceed 50.

At a 5 a.m. news conference, Beshear said the state’s death toll may reach between 70 and 100, across five or more counties.

He said about 110 people were inside a candle factory in Mayfield when the tornado struck and expects “dozens” of the employees have died.

Beshear, who offered comments over the phone with Louisville station WLKY-TV, said a single tornado ripped across the state for about 200 miles.

“Last night Western Kentucky experienced some of the worst tornado damage we’ve seen, and we are urging everyone to please stay safe as there are still active cells,” Beshear wrote on Twitter around 2 a.m.

Southwest Kentucky saw “twin tornadoes” strike around 2:20 a.m. near Bowling Green, WDRB reported.

In Madisonville, Kentucky, a freight-train derailment was reported shortly after midnight due to severe weather. No injuries were immediately reported, a spokeswoman for rail company CSX Corp. told Fox News.

The details of the damage across all 5 States and the extent of fatalities are still developing as crews begin responding to the widespread catastrophe. 

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