New video shows the intense devastation wrought by a tornado that ripped through Kentucky late Friday and early Saturday, leaving at least 70 people dead.
Photojournalist and storm chaser Brandon Clement posted drone footage of the city of Mayfield on Saturday. The city of just over 10,000 people has all but disappeared, and the catastrophic destruction has to be seen to be believed:
The damage in Mayfield was left by one of a series of tornadoes that swept through the region overnight, leaving damage across five states. The record-breaking tornado tore through a candle factory in Mayfield; another led to the partial collapse of an Amazon warehouse in Illinois; and a third possible tornado trapped residents and workers at a nursing home in Arkansas.
The tornadoes left at least 70 people dead in Kentucky, and at least three dead in Tennessee, but officials expect that number to rise as search and rescue efforts continue.
“This has been the most devastating tornado event in our state’s history,” Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear said at a press conference on Saturday.
The number of dead in his state “may in fact end up exceeding 100 before the day is done,” Beshear added.
Beshear has declared a state of emergency and activated the National Guard. Kentucky State Police Trooper Sarah Burgess said search and rescue crews are still clearing rubble and debris, a process that will take some time.
“We just can’t confirm a number right now because we are still out there working, and we have so many agencies involved in helping us,” Burgess said.