Tennessee tornadoes leave 6 dead and 23 injured, officials say

Severe weather that hit the South Saturday spawned powerful tornadoes in Tennessee, leaving six people dead and more than 20 injured, buildings in tatters, trees and power lines toppled, officials said.

As of early Sunday, the hardest-hit locations appeared to be northern Nashville and Clarksville in northern Tennessee, where authorities reported severe and extensive damage. Emergency crews continued to search for survivors and assess the extent of devastation left by the storm, as officials suggested the death toll could rise. More than 52,000 customers were without power in Tennessee.

Officials in Montgomery County, which includes Clarksville, said two adults and a child died in a tornado this afternoon and that 23 people were injured and taken to hospitals.

“We are still in the search and rescue phase of this disaster and will provide updates as soon as we receive confirmation,” the county said on Facebook. Mayor Joe Pitts of Clarksville declared a state of emergency and enacted a 9pm curfew for Saturday and Sunday nights.

In Davidson County, which includes Nashville, officials said three people had died because of the bad weather”. Freddie O’Connell, mayor of Nashville, declared a state of emergency for the city and Davidson County, allowing the area to obtain state and federal resources.

Three weather-related injuries, including head trauma, were reported earlier in Dresden, Tennessee, said Ray Wiggington, director of emergency management for Weakley County. At least one mobile home was overturned, he said.

All of the injuries occurred on Summers Road in Dresden, he said, adding that it was unclear whether the damage was caused by “an actual tornado or simply straight-line winds.”

He said a powerful EF3 tornado, which has winds of 136 to 165 miles per hour, “hit in almost the exact same area” in December 2021. “That’s on everyone’s mind,” he said.

“We know there is extensive damage throughout the community,” Clarksville Mayor Joe Pitts said in an earlier social media message. He implored residents to stay home and avoid the roads, adding that there were downed power lines.

An emergency shelter was made available at a local high school for displaced residents, officials said.

Ronnie Glynn, a Tennessee state representative, said he witnessed the storm’s devastation in Clarksville.

“I barely made it home to my family,” he said. on social media. “Please pray for Clarksville. “A lot of destruction.”

Videos on social media they showed crumpled and overturned vehicles inKentucky. Several buildings appeared battered and partially collapsed. A pizzeria in Clarksville, Tennessee, near the Kentucky border, appears to have burned to the ground.

In another social media post, it looked like a storm had broken out felled heavy trees and tore the roofs of houses to pieces in White Bluff, Tennessee, about 35 miles south of Clarksville.

Severe damage was also reported in Hendersonville, Tennessee, a city just northeast of Nashville.

Tornado and severe thunderstorm watches and warnings were posted Saturday in parts of Arkansas, Kentucky, Mississippi and Tennessee.

While it may seem strange to think about tornadoes in December, this group of Southern states is, on average, the area of ​​the country that sees the most tornadoes during this month.

Even though it’s December, the first month of meteorological winter, temperatures in the eastern United States this weekend were more in line with the start of fall.

That heat is accompanied by a surge of moisture that will bring “significant precipitation” from the Gulf Coast to the Northeast through Sunday, according to the Weather Prediction Center.

The National Weather Service in New York issued a flood warning for parts of southern Connecticut, northeastern New Jersey and southeastern New York, including Brooklyn and Manhattan.

The full warning is in effect from Sunday afternoon until late Sunday night. Officials in New York Heavy rain and strong to violent winds are forecast for Saturday late Sunday and into Monday.

More than 40 daily rainfall records from the Mid-Atlantic to New England will be challenged Sunday.

The accumulated heat will be progressively expelled by a colder air mass over the course of the weekend.

As colder air pushes in Sunday into Monday, rain will transition to a wintry, snowy mix, most likely affecting the higher elevations of the Appalachians and the Northeast Interior.

It reminds us that despite the warm weekend, we are actually heading into the depths of winter.

Orlando Mayorquin AND John Yoon contributed to the reporting.