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The Latest on Deep South storms (all times local):
An emergency management official says two people are confirmed dead and there are many injuries in a southeast Alabama community hit by an apparent tornado that destroyed several homes.
Spokeswoman Rita Smith with the Lee County Emergency Management Agency says she wasn’t authorized to release further details of thee deaths, but says they occurred along with numerous injuries in the community of Beauregard, Alabama.
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Authorities reported what appeared to be a large tornado struck Sunday afternoon.
“We’ve got about 150 first responders out there,” Smith told The Associated Press by phone. “They are doing a phenomenal job. Sadly, we know that we have two known confirmed fatalities and many, many injuries.”
She says multiple homes have been destroyed or damaged in Beauregard, a community about 60 miles (95 kilometers) east of Montgomery, the state capital.
Meteorlogist Meredith Wyatt with the Birmingham, Alabama, office of the National Weather Service says radar and video evidence showed what looked like a large tornado crossing the area near Beauregard shortly after 2 p.m. Sunday.
Numerous tornado warnings were posted across parts of Alabama and Georgia on Sunday as a severe storm system churned across the Deep South.
A National Weather Service meteorologist says there are reports of “significant” damage from a possible tornado in southeast Alabama near the Georgia state line.
Meteorologist Meredith Wyatt said video and radar showed a possible tornado hitting near Smith’s Station, Alabama, on Sunday afternoon. Wyatt said she had no immediate reports of serious injuries.
The National Weather Service on Sunday issued a series of tornado warnings stretching from Phenix City, Alabama, near the Georgia state line to Macon, Georgia, about 100 miles (160 kilometers) to the east.
The threat of severe weather was expected to continue until late Sunday. A tornado watch was in effect for much of Georgia, including Athens, Augusta and Savannah. The tornado watch also covers a large area of South Carolina, including the cities of Charleston and Columbia.