Residents across the South are waking up Tuesday morning to the damage left behind by a series of deadly tornadoes and the threat of more damaging winds.
The twisters that tore through parts of Louisiana, Mississippi, and Alabama are part of a larger storm system that’s also piling snow and ice across the Midwest and northeastern U.S.
Tornado activity is expected to die down by early Tuesday morning and turn into a straight-line-wind event that will continue into Alabama and Georgia, CNN meteorologist Michael Guy said.
“The main threat is damaging winds, though a brief/spin-up tornado cannot be ruled out,” the weather service in Atlanta said.
In Alabama, a severe storm alert warned of damaging winds with up to 60 mph into Tuesday morning.
In central Mississippi, one school district canceled school Tuesday ahead of the anticipated conditions.
“Due to the inability to properly assess schools and roads tonight following the inclement weather, all schools in the Laurel School District will be closed,” the district said in a statement.
Meanwhile, the storm will make for difficult morning commutes further north.
“Heavy snow and possible ice will continue to plague areas of the Ohio Valley to the Northeast and New England … through Tuesday,” the National Weather Service said.
Parts of the Northeast — including areas in New York and around Boston — may see up to 6 inches of snow by Wednesday, the weather service said.
Three deaths reported
At least three people were killed Monday when more than two dozen tornadoes touched down across the Southeast, damaging homes, churches, and other buildings, officials said.
A 59-year-old woman in Vernon, Louisiana, was killed when a tornado destroyed her mobile home, the Vernon Parish Sheriff’s Office said.
Roofs were blown off homes and people were trapped in their houses, Beauregard Sheriff’s Office Chief Detective Jared Morton told CNN affiliate WJW. “A substantial number of trees and power lines” also were out, the sheriff’s office said.
A couple was killed in Lawrence County, Alabama when a tornado passed through, Town Creek Police Chief Jerry Garrett said in a Monday night news conference.
A seven-year-old boy was found injured near the couple and taken to the hospital, Garrett said.
More injuries were reported as a tornado tore through Columbia, Mississippi, the police chief said. Some officers ferried people to the emergency room, Columbia Police Chief Michael Kelly told CNN.
“We are just happy at this time that there are no fatalities reported,” he said Monday night.
In Edwards, Mississippi, residents were in the dark late Monday as storms trekked through the area.
“I heard glass scattering everywhere, trees falling. I’ve been here for 42 years. I’ve never experienced anything like this before,” Shelia Hilton told CNN affiliate WLBT.
In Lee County, further north, about 60 homes, and a church were damaged, said Paul Harkins, the 911 director for the county’s sheriff’s office. No one was in the church when the weather pushed through, said state Sen. Chad McMahan.
“We are blessed tonight,” Guntown, Mississippi, Mayor Bud Herring said of the lack of fatalities or serious injuries.