At least nine people are dead after more than a dozen tore tornadoes through the southeastern United States on Thursday. And the toll is expected to rise.County Emergency Management Agency Director Ernie Baggett said seven death. Six of the deaths were reported Thursday, and a seventh was confirmed a day later.
In Georgia, a 5-year-old boy died when a tree fell on his car. The second fatality in Georgia was a Department of Transportation employee who was responding. To storm damage, Gov. Brian Kemp said at a news conference Friday.
“Unfortunately with the storm moving across our state, it’s been a tragic night and morning in our state,” he said. “It’s a very dangerous environment.”
In Alabama’s Autauga County, crews resumed damage surveys and found at least 40 homes that were either completely. Destroyed or uninhabitable, Baggett said.
He said he had never seen anything like it before in Autauga County.
“It’s total destruction,” he said. “There are some streets in our county that have one or two houses left that might be livable.”
Drone video revealed widespread damage in Selma and Greensboro, Alabama, with roofs torn off and trees down.
In downtown Selma, power poles, trees and some roads were completely blocked in some areas.
The National Weather Service office in Birmingham, Alabama, said it had “received reports of extensive damage. And would survey the damage in the coming days.
As of Friday night, officials had collected information. About seven tornadoes — four EF2 and three EF1 — that tore through a wide swath of Alabama.
One tornado, an EF2 that touched down in Dallas County, was 23 miles across with a maximum width of 800 yards. ccording to the National Weather Service.
Peak winds for the twister, which intensified as it entered the Selma city limits, were 130 mph, according to the agency.
In Autauga County, northwest of Montgomery, a tornado caused “at least” EF3 damage. Meaning three-second gusts of 136 to 165 mph, according to the weather service.
Survey teams will continue their work on Saturday, in other areas including Outaga, Tuscaloosa and Hale counties.
In Georgia, multiple departments are responding and assessing the damage. Including the state emergency management agency. According to Col. Chris Wright, the Department of Public Safety. Helped rescue students trapped overnight at a middle school. And reunite them with their parents.
Georgia Governor and Lieutenant Governor Bart Jones tornadoes inspected the damage by helicopter on Friday.
At least 24,828 homes and businesses in Alabama and Georgia were without power Friday night. According to the outage tracking website Poweroutage.us.