Southern storms damage homes, buildings, power lines

National News

WINFIELD, Ala. (AP) — Homes and buildings were damaged and trees were blown down as a line of intense thunderstorms rolled across several Southern states, authorities said. There were no immediate reports of injuries.

In the west Alabama town of Winfield, Wednesday’s storms damaged buildings in the downtown area, authorities said. Building walls collapsed and roofs were lying in roads, Winfield Police Chief Brett Burleson told WBRC-TV.

“Downtown Winfield is a dangerous area,” the Marion County Sheriff’s Department said in a statement on social media. “There are confirmed live power lines down.”

Police ordered people to stay out of the downtown area as officers and sheriff’s deputies worked to assess the damage in the town, located about 75 miles (120 kilometers) northwest of Birmingham.

“If you don’t have to come down here, don’t,” Burleson told WBRC. “There are lines down, glass in the road, nails.”

In northeastern Alabama’s Etowah County, an emergency manager reported that a pole barn was destroyed and at least two homes damaged.

The storms prompted tornado watches and warnings Wednesday for parts of several states, including Alabama, Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi and Tennessee, but it wasn’t immediately known whether twisters caused the damage in Alabama.

The threat of severe weather persisted Thursday, with several strong storms threatening parts of Alabama, Georgia, Mississippi and South Carolina as the system moves east.

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