At least one person was killed and 19 others were injured after a tornado hit central Mississippi overnight, authorities said.
A tornado hit the town of Louin, about 70 miles east of Jackson, at about 11:30 p.m. Sunday, said Eric Carpenter, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Jackson.
Mr. Carpenter said it was possible more tornadoes struck the area overnight, but that inspection teams would assess the damage later Monday morning to confirm.
There is no information about how the deaths occurred or the nature of the other victims’ injuries, said Becky Collins, a spokeswoman for South Central Regional Medical Center in Laurel, where some of the victims were taken. The property is located about an hour south of Louin.
Most of the injured people were in stable condition or had been discharged from the emergency room, he said, adding that more victims could arrive at the hospital later in the morning.
As of Monday morning, nearly 500,000 customers across the South were without power, including more than 50,000 in Mississippi, according to poweroutage.uswhich compiles data from utilities.
More than 29 million people, mainly in Texas, Louisiana and Mississippi, were under an excessive heat alarm.
Video and images of the damage in Louin show fields destroyed, houses razed and debris strewn across the roads. A video circulating on social media showed rescuers rescuing people from damaged homes in the middle of the night.
« It’s been a very interesting weather pattern, especially for June, » Carpenter said. « In this situation, the jet stream is unusually strong over the area and is creating a spring-like situation. »
Mr. Carpenter said the fronts hitting the central part of the state have been heavy and brought a barrage of chaotic weather, including flash flooding.
Sunday night’s tornado comes over the past week after severe storms hit parts of the South, killing five people in three states.