Multiple dead, widespread damage across Alabama in tornado outbreak
MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WSFA) - Seven people are now confirmed dead and significant damage is being reported from Thursday’s severe storms and tornado outbreak across much of central Alabama.
At least six people were killed in Autauga County, according to Autauga County interim Sheriff David Hill, who said more fatalities are possible.
According to the Autauga County EMA, there are multiple reports of homes damaged, trees down, and injuries in the Old Kingston area after damaging storms moved through the area.
Autauga EMA is also reporting damage along C.R. 68 and Hwy 31 all the way to the county line and also has experienced multiple trees and power lines down. Autauga County EMA has informed WSFA that this area is the top concern right now.
In south Alabama’s Coffee County, there are reports of trees and power lines down.
A significant tornado moved its way across the city of Selma Thursday, leaving behind destruction. Selma officials have called this a “disaster area.” Many roads are blocked with storm debris in Selma, as well as throughout the county.
Elmore County EMA Director Keith Barnett confirms widespread damage from Lightwood to Holtville to Slapout, across Lake Jordan, into the Titus Community and stretching into Coosa County. Multiple reports of homes and other structures damaged and trees down. No injuries reported at the moment, but still working to search the damaged areas.
People are being asked to stay away from the damaged areas.
Alexander City Mayor Woody Baird completed a storm damage survey and said there are homes damaged on Cedar Creek Road. The possible tornado crossed over the river and destroyed an unknown number of homes in the area of Lake Ridge Drive.
The mayor says more than 10,000 are without power, and he’s urging residents to stay home while first responders and power crews respond.
There are no reports available on injuries at this time.
As of noon Friday, Alabama Power reports steady progress to restore electricity to customers. Since storms moved through the area, power has been restored to more than 21,000 homes and businesses. At this time, there remain 13,400 APC customers without service in central Alabama. Outages remain concentrated in the following areas:
- Dallas County – 5,500 customers (primarily affecting Selma and Orrville)
- Tallapoosa County – 5,200 customers (primarily around Lake Martin and in the Alexander City, Dadeville areas)
- Elmore County – 2,300 customers (primarily affecting communities of between Holtville and Elmore and those farther to the northeast to Lake Martin (Eclectic, Central, Equality). Other outages in Elmore County are located south of Tallassee.)
- Wilcox County - Scattered outages (fewer than 50)
Power Safety Reminders
- Stay away from downed lines. Do not drive over lines or under low-hanging lines. Always assume power lines are energized.
- Keep children and pets away from downed lines.
- Stay clear of areas with fallen trees or limbs where downed lines may be hidden.
- Exercise caution near chain link fences. Dangerous lines may touch the metal.
- Avoid stepping in puddles and standing water after a storm as they may be touching hidden, downed power lines and be electrified.
- DO NOT attempt to remove tree limbs or anything else caught in power lines. Call us at 1-800-888-2726 or contact a local law enforcement agency if downed lines are spotted.
Customers are urged to contact Spire Alabama if they smell natural gas.
- Someone is available to assist customers on our Alabama emergency line 24/7 and if a customer does smell natural gas – a rotten egg smell:
- Leave the area right away to find a safe space
- Call our emergency line at 800-292-4008 or call 911
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