More than 3,000 Alabama workers have filed for unemployment benefits because the tornadoes April 27 knocked them out of work.
State Industrial Relations Director Tom Surtees says Madison County leads with 913 claims, followed by Tuscaloosa County with 429. He says the number is expected to grow for a few more days and then start declining next week as more employers reopen, particularly in the Huntsville area.
Surtees says the 3,055 out-of-work Alabama residents is enough to raise the state's unemployment rate by about one-tenth of a percentage point.
Alabama's unemployment rate for March was 9.2 percent. The April rate will be released May 20. The May unemployment rate, which will reflect the tornado damage, will be released June 17.