A series of strong storms and tornadoes swept across parts of the South, and weather is blamed in at least two deaths in Georgia.
A man in Douglas County, west of Atlanta, died after a tree and power lines fell on his vehicle Monday morning, a county spokesman said.
In the community of Bonaire just southeast of Warner Robins, Carla Harris, 55, died after she was struck by a tree that fell on and through her home, the Houston County Emergency Management Agency said.
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There were reports to the National Weather Service of possible tornadoes in Georgia, South Carolina, Virginia, Illinois and Texas Monday, although the reports were preliminary and may not have been confirmed.
Late Monday severe thunderstorm watches covered parts of Texas from west of Fort Worth and Dallas, into most of Arkansas and part of southern Missouri.
A neighbor hugs Vickie Savell next to the remains of her new mobile home early on May 3, 2021, in Yazoo County, Miss.Rogelio V. Solis / AP
Sunday night, forecasters warned of a “tornado emergency” for Tupelo, Mississippi, and urged people to take shelter immediately.
A tornado preliminarily rated as an EF-1 with peak winds of 100 mph hit the city on a path that was almost 13 miles, the National Weather Service said, causing damage to homes and businesses but with no deaths or injuries.
Tornadoes leave trail of destruction across Mississippi
May 3, 202101:08
“We were downstairs watching the news, and when he said, ‘tornado emergency,’ we all took cover,” Matthew Bazzy of Elvis Presley Drive told NBC affiliate WTVA.
“And then my dad yelled, ‘Here it comes,’ and we could hear the whipping of the wind in the backyard and just crashing and banging and all kinds of stuff,” he said.
Some homes suffered severe damage, according to WTVA.
The home where Elvis Presley was born, which is now a museum, was not damaged, the museum said in a Facebook post, but it urged people to pray for those who were affected.
Another tornado, an EF-1 with peak winds of 90 mph winds, hit Calhoun City on a 2-mile track, the weather service said.
Calhoun County Sheriff Greg Pollan said in a Facebook post that the community of around 2,000 “was hit hard” by the storms, and aerial video showed destroyed and damaged buildings.
Eight tornadoes touched down in the parts of central Mississippi on Sunday, the national weather service in Jackson said, including in the area of Yazoo City where an EF-1 with 110 mph peak winds struck.
Vickie Savell told The Associated Press that her brand-new mobile home south of the city was turned into scraps. She and her husband moved in eight days ago. The home had been lifted off its foundation and moved about 25 feet.
“Oh my God, my first new house in 40 years, and it’s gone,” she told the news agency.