The death toll of a string of deadly tornadoes has risen. This is following a collapse of an Amazon warehouse in Illinois and the devastation of multiple towns. Officials warn that at least 80 are likely dead. This deadly string of tornadoes struck parts of central and southern United stares on Friday night and early Saturday morning.
At least six people died following a tornado striking an Amazon warehouse in western Illinois. The storm caused intensive damage to the building on Saturday morning.
“We’re deeply saddened by the news that members of our Amazon family passed away as a result of the storm in Edwardsville, Illinois. Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims, their loved ones, and everyone impacted by the storm,” a spokesperson for the company said in a statement about the events.
According to CNN, one person in the warehouse is in the hospital. A bus carried 30 people to reunite with their families. Others left the scene on their own. The tornado hit Edwardsville at around 8:30 pm on Friday night.
“Earlier this afternoon, the response portion of this incident came to a close and we’re now focused solely on recovery,” Edwardsville fire chief James Whiteford said in a statement.
Rescuers Continue Searching Through the Rubble Following the Deadly Tornado
Amazon does not know the exact amount of people that were in the building at the time. The company says it’s trying to account for everyone. Search and rescue operations were difficult. Loose power lines, excess water from the fire impression system of the warehouse, and unsecured concrete all made the efforts harder. Drone footage painted a similar picture, showing rescue workers picking through the rubble.
Illinois Governor JB Pritzker Tweeted out condolences to those affected by the tornadoes. He wrote that “My prayers are with the people of Edwardsville tonight. And I’ve reached out to the mayor to provide any needed state resources.”
One woman, Sarah Bierman, described to CNN her worry about her husband’s condition.
“I talked to him about eight o’clock tonight. A little before I texted him, and he was returning to the warehouse to drop his van off,” she said.
“And I haven’t heard from him since I just heard through the news, and we live in Edwardsville; we lost power. So I decided to come down here to see what was going on, and I had no idea the building looked that bad. And I’m just; I’m worried sick.”
The grim situation in Illinois is coupled with similar or even more grave situations across the country. In Kentucky, the town of Mayfield was especially hard hit with an occupied candle factory collapsing with more than 100 people inside.
Additionally, many eyes are on the significant damage done to a nursing home in Alabama.
More information on the tragic situation caused by the outbreak of Tornadoes across the country will continue to surface as rescuers continue digging through the wreckage.