President Joe Biden offers full federal support for those affected by Mississippi tornadoes
President Joe Biden spoke with state and local leaders after a deadly storm that spawned 24 tornadoes ripped through Mississippi and parts of Alabama.
The powerful tornadoes developed from a storm that carved a ferocious northeastward path through Mississippi and parts of Alabama at 80 mph, according to AccuWeather.
At least 24 people have been killed in the two states, the majority in Mississippi, but as search and rescue teams comb through the rubble they say they can expect that number to rise.
Biden said he is “praying for those who have lost loved ones” and “for those whose loved ones are missing.”
In a statement, the president wrote that he had contacted Mississippi Governor Tate Reeves that he had spoken with the senses. Roger Wicker and Cindy Hyde-Smith, and that he had contacted Rep. Bennie Thompson about the situation.
President Joe Biden spoke with state and local leaders after a deadly storm that spawned 24 tornadoes tore through Mississippi and parts of Alabama
Reeves arrived in Rolling Fork on Saturday with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). He said he had the full support of US President Joe Biden who assured him over the phone that FEMA would be there to “support” the response.
He expressed condolences and offered “full federal support as communities recover from the effects of this storm.”
Federal Emergency Management Agency Administrator Deanne Criswell was also among those Biden contacted following the devastation.
‘[She] has already deployed emergency response personnel and resources to support search and rescue and assess the damage,” he said.
“We will do everything we can to help you. We will work together to provide the support you need to recover, for as long as it takes.
FEMA tweeted: “Following last night’s devastating tornadoes, we are coordinating with @MSEMA officials to support affected communities.”
“We are working closely with our state partners to assess the affected areas. Our hearts go out to these communities and their loved ones.
The rural towns of Silver City and Rolling Fork, about 60 miles northeast of Jackson, Mississippi, were hardest hit after a tornado hit the area just after 8 p.m. Friday.
Aerial footage shot on a drone from Rolling Fork filmed early Saturday morning revealed gutted homes, battered vehicles lodged among the rubble and residents’ belongings strewn across the desert.
Other footage from the town revealed broken residents wandering the town spilling over the debris in the hope of salvaging valuables they had left behind.
As dawn broke over the Mississippi, the trail of destruction left by the powerful tornadoes was laid bare.
Reeves declared a state of emergency after 24 tornadoes tore through the state, killing dozens, injuring others and leaving a trail of destruction likened to a ‘war zone’
Residents of hard-hit Rolling Fork greeted Reeves as he surveyed the damage done to the small town
Meanwhile, a 67-year-old Alabama man was killed after being trapped inside his mobile home during Friday night’s tornadoes, CNN reported.
A Morgan County Emergency Department spokesperson confirmed the death and told the outlet that it was unclear whether a powerful tornado or two separate storms devastated the area.
The Morgan County death is the only one recorded so far in Alabama and brought the death toll for the entire storm system to 24.
It comes as authorities revealed a husband and wife were found dead in their home in Rolling Fork after winds sent a neighbour’s 18-wheeler truck crashing into their home.
Rolling Fork resident Shanta Howard said the community has stepped up to help with the operation.
“Everyone helps everyone, not just this part of town – it’s everywhere,” she told WAPT 16.
“Everyone helps and prays for everyone. As you can see, nobody has a house here.
“We had to help the corpses out of the house. It’s very disturbing – in fact, to see people losing their lives to bad weather like this.
‘What went through my mind? “Lord, I don’t want to die. I don’t want me or the kids to die.
Shelters have been opened in Mississippi for people forced from their homes by tornadoes in Sharkey, Monroe and Humphreys counties.
Shelters have been opened in Mississippi for people forced from their homes by tornadoes in Sharkey, Monroe and Humphreys counties
Search and rescue teams have now been deployed to Rolling Fork, along with ambulances
The Mississippi Emergency Management Agency met Saturday morning to get more information about the overnight storms and plan how to deal with the devastation
Saturday’s main threats were damaging winds and isolated tornadoes as the larger storm system headed east and is expected to push back the east coast by evening.
On Sunday, a level 2 out of 5 risk is in place in parts of the south for another round of severe storms that will bring damaging winds, isolated tornadoes and severe hail to the region.
Affected areas will include Montgomery in Alabama, Jackson in Mississippi and Columbus and Macon in Georgia.
Flooding could also pose a threat in parts of the south as an additional 2 to 4 inches of rain is possible through Sunday.