(NASHVILLE, Tenn.) — A devastating tornado ripped through Nashville, Tennessee early Tuesday, killing at least nine. Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee warned there may be more fatalities.
The tornado in Nashville was just one of three to hit Tennessee overnight. Benton, Wilson, Putnam and Davidson counties all saw fatalities.
Twisters were also reported in Missouri and Kentucky.
— At least 48 buildings collapsed, authorities said.
— Fifty-thousand customers are without power, officials said.
— Fifteen Super Tuesday polling stations have been impacted, officials said. Alternative locations will be offered for voters.
East Nashville and the suburb of Mt. Juliet were hit particularly hard.
“Our community has been greatly impacted by a tornado,” Capt. Chandler of the Mt. Juliet Police Department said early Tuesday. “There are multiple homes damaged and multiple people injured. Our officers are in the early stages of this response and we continue to assess what is happening … there are multiple homes damaged, multiple people injured, multiple people still trapped. We need your help.”
“There are gas lines that are leaking, power lines that are on the ground, and multiple emergency responders are responding to those who are injured and trying to get them the help that they need,” Chandler continued.
The tornado reportedly stayed on the ground for about 10 miles into Hermitage, Tennessee.
The Five Points neighborhood in East Nashville is half-destroyed, according to ABC News’ Nashville affiliate WKRN.
“It’s like driving through a war zone,” tweeted WKRN reporter Brent Remadna. “Cars destroyed, buildings destroyed…breaks my heart.”
“This is absolutely devastating. It sounded like a freight train,” tweeted WKRN reporter Julia Palazzo.
In West Nashville there were reports of heavy damage to planes as well as overturned tractor-trailers across interstates, according to WKRN.
President Donald Trump called the tornadoes “devastating” in a tweet and pledged the federal government’s support.
Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee called the loss of life and damage “heartbreaking.”
Nashville Mayor John Cooper urged residents to avoid driving Tuesday to help the recovery efforts move more quickly.
All metropolitan Nashville schools are closed on Tuesday.
The destruction came amid an outbreak of twisters in Tennessee, Missouri and Kentucky.
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