Tens of thousands without electricity when deadly storms hit the southeast
The ongoing cleanup and recovery efforts after severe storms in the southern United States were interrupted on Tuesday by another round of thunderstorms. The Carolinas to Louisiana and parts of northeast Texas were monitored through Tuesday evening, while violent storms continued to break out in parts of the Ohio Valley and the central Appalachians. The storms became fatal early Tuesday when a Tennessee woman was killed by a falling tree as severe thunderstorms passed through Weakley County, northwestern the state, WKRN in Nashville reported. The strong storms hit the area around 4 a.m. local time and damaged at least six mobile homes. The victim was reportedly asleep in her bed when the tree fell on her bedroom. WKRN reported, citing local law enforcement agencies. In parts of Arkansas, Kentucky and Tennessee there were severe thunderstorms early Tuesday morning. (AccuWeather) Tuesday’s worst storm was concentrated in the Gulf Coast states with a moderate risk of damaging storms in parts of Mississippi and Alabama. A little over 1 million people live in this area, which includes the Mississippi city of Hattiesburg. Early in the day, thunderstorms gathered over northern Louisiana and southeast Arkansas before joining into an intense line over Mississippi by early Tuesday afternoon. House damage from a fallen tree in northeast Jackson, Mississippi. (Image via Twitter / @ jennnotgin) “This is an EXTREMELY DANGEROUS SITUATION with tornado-like wind speeds,” said the National Weather Service (NWS) office in Jackson, Mississippi, as the storms approached the Mississippi capital. “These storms can cause serious injury and significant property damage.” “The main threat of the storms on Tuesday was the damaging winds,” said AccuWeather meteorologist Brett Rossio. He added that the storm line produced localized straight line winds as well as a few tornadoes. A series of intense storms swept Mississippi on May 4, 2021. (AccuWeather) In Philadelphia, Mississippi, northeast of Jackson, a gust of wind of 75 miles per hour was recorded as the storms ripped through the area with fallen trees and power lines. CLICK HERE FOR THE FREE ACCUWEATHER APP. A radar-confirmed tornado was tracked dangerously close to Jackson shortly after 2:30 p.m. CDT, but the extent of the damage is still unclear. A large branch landed on a truck in Belhaven, Mississippi, damaging the vehicle in severe storms. (Twitter / @ehhender) Power outages began to explode Tuesday afternoon with more than 100,000 outages in Mississippi alone, with additional outages in states like Arkansas, Georgia, North Carolina, and Virginia. More than 300,000 failures were reported at one point in time. People in the Washington, DC area crouched for a strong storm that pulled right around the Tuesday night commute. In Van Buren, Arkansas, a tornado-warned storm devastated power lines and sparked them. Some streets in Alabama were impassable Tuesday night not only because of fallen trees and power lines, but also because of severe flooding. The National Weather Service announced late Tuesday afternoon a flash flood emergency for the subway area of Birmingham, Alabama, which it has described as a “particularly dangerous situation”. The alert covers southeast Jefferson County and northwest Shelby County in central Alabama. At around 5:00 p.m. (CDT), emergency management employees reported that thunderstorms were causing heavy rain over the warning area, causing between 3 and 5 inches of rain. The NWS in Birmingham reported that 3.46 inches of rain had fallen into their office within two hours. Birmingham typically receives around 5 inches of rain for the entire month of May. “Lots of flooding around the airport grounds here. Folks, the heavy rain / flash flood threat is NOT kidding. PLEASE stay off the streets while in Jefferson / Shelby Counties,” NWS Birmingham tweeted. The NWS in Birmingham urged residents to move to a higher level now due to the dangerous, life threatening flash floods and thunderstorms. The life-threatening flash floods were particularly directed against low water crossings, small streams and rivers, urban areas, highways, roads and underpasses. Flood rain reports in the south from the late evening hours of May 4, 2021. Tuesday’s thunderstorm and noxious storms were a continuation of the weekend and Monday as storms were tracked in Texas and Mississippi, including a Mississippi tornado that set off a rarity tornado- Emergency for nearly 100,000 people. Two separate deaths were reported in Georgia on Monday. The risk of severe thunderstorms is expected to decrease significantly by mid-week as the entire storm system begins to move offshore. Check back often at AccuWeather.com and keep up to date with DirecTV, Frontier, Spectrum, FuboTV, Philo and Verizon Fios on the AccuWeather network.