Tennessee tornadoes kill dozens, destroy buildings

World Wednesday 04/March/2020 14:39 PM
By: Times News Service
Tennessee tornadoes kill dozens, destroy buildings

Tornadoes raged through the US state of Tennessee on Tuesday, leaving at least 25 people dead and buildings, cars and planes ripped apart.

The destruction came hours before the southern state voted in Super Tuesday primaries, the most important day in choosing which Democrat candidate will go into the presidential race. Voting was kept open late in many parts of the state owing to the extreme weather and travel risks.

Tens of thousands of people lost power while others had to run for cover as the tornado arrived with little warning. Many people were sleeping when the first round of tornadoes took place early on Tuesday morning.

Hangars and planes at Nashville's John C. Tune airport were also seriously damaged.

'We will rebuild'

Tennessee governor Bill Lee declared an emergency and set up rescue efforts across the state.

He wrote on Twitter that "we will continue deploying search and rescue teams, opening shelters across the state, and sending emergency personnel to our communities hit hardest."

"We encourage all Tennesseans to joins us in praying for the families across the state that are facing tragedy today," the Republican governor added.

Many buildings were missing their roofs, while roads were made impassible. The city of Nashville was especially badly hit.

One tornado in nearby Putnam County damaged more than 100 structures along a path of destruction that lasted for several miles. Authorities imposed a nighttime curfew.

"We are resilient and we're going to rebuild,'' Nashville Mayor John Cooper said. US President Donald Trump also announced he will visit the affected areas on Friday.