Deadly EF3 Tornado Devastates Columbus, Mississippi, Downtown Area and Causes Extensive Flooding in Alabama, Mississippi and Tennessee


February 25, 2019

One woman was killed after an EF3 tornado tore through Columbus, Mississippi, late on Saturday afternoon.



Damaging thunderstorms accompanied by tornadoes and flooding caused significant damage across northern Mississippi, northern Alabama and central Tennessee.

One woman was killed after an EF3 tornado tore through Columbus, Mississippi, late on Saturday afternoon.

In a statement released by Mayor Robert Smith of Columbus, 41-year-old Ashley Pounds was killed when a building collapsed on her and three other people. She was taken to a local hospital where she died in surgery.

A dozen other people sustained injuries but were not hospitalized, according to the Associated Press.

There were spotter-confirmed tornadoes on Saturday evening in Artesia, Leedy and Burnsville, Mississippi.

In Alabama, Gov. Kay Ivey issued a state of emergency declaration for 19 counties that went into effect at 9 p.m. Saturday night, thanks to days of heavy rain and the severe weather on Saturday.

“Parts of northern Alabama have seen days of rain and the ground can no longer absorb it. Those rains combined with the ongoing severe weather today have caused a need for this State of Emergency,” Ivey said.


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As the severe weather outbreak unfolded, flooding prompted rescues across the Tennessee Valley.

The National Weather Service office in Nashville reports that, as of Saturday, the city has now experienced its wettest February on record even before the severe weather targeted the city.

Flooding led to many road closures and water rescues in areas across Tennessee. According to officials, 98 roads were closed due to flooding inside the City of Knoxville on Saturday.

The Knoxville Fire Department rescued victims from a van in floodwaters at Concorde Street in Knoxville, Tennessee.

Three people narrowly escaped their vehicle as it was swallowed by a sinkhole on a flooded roadway near Jackson, Tennessee, on Saturday.



A state of emergency was declared in Magoffin County, Kentucky, on Saturday evening. Widespread flooding and a major mudslide led to road closures, travel disruptions and property damage. An emergency responder was injured when a tree fell on a Magoffin County Rescue Squad vehicle.

Officials from the North Carolina Department of Transportation announced that Interstate 40 near the Tennessee state line will remain closed through the state's mountains for a week due to a rock slide. Both eastbound and westbound lanes were closed on Friday night after a landslide.



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