‘Deadliest storm’ kills more than 84 as it rips through Amazon warehouse in 250-mile rampage

DEADLY winter storm Atticus struck Arkansas, Illinois and Missouri, and caused a state of emergency to be declared in Kentucky with at least 84 feared dead across 5 states.

Tornado damage followed Winter Storm Atticus from the Rockies to the Midwest, with at least 80 dead in Kentucky alone, following the wild weather.

The Governor of Kentucky, Andy Beshear, has said that the state should expect closer to 100 deaths after the tornado ripped through multiple communities, leveling buildings.

He said in a press conference: “We believe our death toll from this event will exceed 50 Kentuckians, probably end up closer to 70 to 100 lost lives.”

Meanwhile, local ABC affiliate KAIT reported that two people were killed and five others hurt in a “mass casualty” event at Monette Manor nursing home after a tornado pummeled the area in Arkansas.

About 20 people were trapped at the facility, which has 90 beds, according to the news station, as shocking pictures showed debris covering the parking lot, with major damage to the building.

Atticus, the first winter storm named this season, has spread heavy snow across Salt Lake City, northern Colorado, eastern Wyoming, southern South Dakota, northwest Nebraska and is now headed into the Plains and Upper Midwest.

Additionally, the storm could produce destructive winds in parts of the Great Lakes, according to The Weather Channel.

Read our Tornado Path Tracker live blog for the latest updates…


    Jeff Bezos has been slammed for celebrating his Blue Origin space trip after the collapse of one of his Amazon warehouses due to the deadly path of tornadoes.

    The billionaire took around 24 hours to publicly respond to the tragedy after the tornado hit the building in Edwardsville, Illinois, and trapped 100 workers inside on Friday.

    On Saturday morning, the Amazon founder made no mention of the deadly collapse, which killed six, when he went on social media praising a successful landing of one of his Blue Origin missions.


    The twister began on the night of Friday, December 10, and ran through the early morning of Saturday, December 11.

    The Kentucky towns impacted include Princeton, Bowling Green, Taylorsville, Dawson Springs, Mayfield, and a number of others.

    The strong surge of storms hit the western part of Kentucky in succession and affected a total of more than five counties.


    According to Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear, the catastrophic event may be the “most severe tornado event in Kentucky’s history.”

    Classified as a category five tornado, the storm likely killed upwards of 50 people and trapped hundreds more.

    A category five tornado is referred to as one of the “most intense” with maximum winds estimated to be between 261 mph and 318 mph.

  • When was the worst US tornado?

    On March 18, 1925, the deadliest single tornado in US history occurred.

    Called the Tri-State Tornado of March 18, 1925, the tornado killed 695 people in three states.

    11 were killed in Missouri, 613 in Illinois, and 71 in Indiana.

  • How many states were affected?

    At least six states were slammed by more than 30 tornados on December 10.

    The states hit were: Arkansas, Illinois, Kentucky, Missouri, Mississippi and Tennessee.

  • What is a tornado warning?

    Unlike a tornado watch, a tornado warning is issued when severe weather is underway.

    Upon receiving a tornado warning, it is strongly advised to find safe shelter and respond accordingly.

  • What is a tornado watch?

    A tornado watch is issued when there is a strong possibility that a tornado will touch down.

    A tornado watch last a few hours, on average, according to the Tennessee State University Tornado safety guide.

  • Tornado death tolls still unknown

    At least 70 are dead in Kentucky, where Governor Beshear warned the death toll will likely exceed 100.

    Damage to an Arkansas nursing home has killed at least one person.

    In Missouri, at least two people died, and in Illinois, two died after an Amazon warehouse was damaged by a tornado, trapping workers.

  • One of Tennessee’s ‘darkest days’

    Kentucky emergency management director Michael Dossett said that Friday was “one of the darkest days in the state’s history.”

    He said: “This will be one of the most significant, the most extensive disasters that Kentucky has faced.”

    Four tornadoes, one of which stayed on the ground for more than 200 miles after touching down, had swept through the state leaving almost 60,000 Kentuckians without power.

    Among the most significant damage, an Amazon warehouse in western Illinois collapsed trapping 100 workers inside and a nursing home in Arkansas collapsed killing one person.

  • Cleanup underway at Amazon warehouse

    Workers at an Amazon warehouse in Edwardsville, Illinois were trapped inside after the tornado.

    According to the report, the possible tornado caused part of the building’s roof to collapse.

    Dozens of emergency crews were spotted on the scene at the Amazon Warehouse on Gateway Commerce Center Drive after a tornado was confirmed to have touched down in Edwardsville.

    Approximately “a third of the warehouse is torn down and damaged from either straight by line winds or tornado,” KMOV’s Jenna Rae wrote in a tweet.

    Teams clear debris from the damaged Amazon warehouse in IllinoisCredit: AFP
    Teams clear debris from the damaged Amazon warehouse in IllinoisCredit: AFP
  • What is an EF5 tornado?

    Tornadoes are measured for severity on a scale.

    EF5, or F5, is the strongest designation on that scale, and it’s very rare.

    Before the EF5 that hit the midwest in December 2021, the last EF5 hit the US in May of 2013.

    EF5 tornadoes reach wind speeds over 200 miles per hour.

  • President spoke to governors in impacted states

    According to the White House, President Joe Biden has been in contact with Kenturcky Governor Andy Beshear following severe tornado damage.

    He also spoke with Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson, Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker, Missouri Governor Mike Parson, and Tennessee Governor Bill Lee.

    The President expressed “his commitment to delivering assistance as quickly as possible,” the White House said on Twitter.

  • President Biden sends condolences, support

    President Joe Biden acknowledged the impact of the severe weather on the midwest.

    “To lose a loved one in a storm like this is an unimaginable tragedy,” he wrote.

    “We’re working with Governors to ensure they have what they need as the search for survivors and damage assessments continue.”

  • Rescued woman recounts collapse

    Kyanna Parsons-Perez, who was rescued from the Mayfield candle factory, told NBC about the terrifying ordeal.

    She said everyone was “getting down, taking cover” and then suddenly, her ears started popping: “like, you know when you’re on the plane?”

    Then, she said, the lights went out “and then before you know it, it was like the building rocked and collapsed and we fell down,” comparing the factory to a “house of cards”.

    She said that everyone inside the factory “screamed and prayed.”

    Parsons-Perez said she thought she was going to die.

  • How many tornadoes were reported?

    More than 30 tornadoes were reported on December 10 in at least six states. with a 200 mile stretch from Arkansas to Kentucky being hit by one violent, long-track twister.

    category five tornado swept across Kentucky, leading to a death toll that Governor Andy Beshear says could be in the hundreds.

  • Damage to Mayfield, Kentucky

    Mayfield was reportedly hit the hardest, as a tornado wiped out a candle factory on Friday night where approximately 110 people were trapped inside, as Gov. Bershear added: “We believe we’ll lose at least dozens of those individuals.”

    Video from Mayfield showed what remained of the factory: a massive debris field, largely of twisted metal, several feet high.

    Other buildings hit in Mayfield, a city of around 10,000 people, include the Graves County courthouse and adjoining jail.

  • Video shows scope of tornado

    In a video, the huge scale of the tornado that hit the midwest becomes horrifically apparent between flashes of lightning.

    Videographer Brandon Copic shared the picture of the tornado over a highway in Tennessee.

  • National Guard deployed in Kentucky

    Gov. Beshear also revealed that he activated the National Guard in the state, deploying more than 180 guardsmen to the hardest hit area of the state, Western Kentucky.

  • Kentucky governor asks for assistance

    Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear declared a state of emergency early Saturday morning, after deadly tornados slammed the state overnight.

    Gov. Beshear also requested federal assistance from President Joe Biden.

  • Video of tornado that hit Amazon

    A video shows the tornado that struck an Amazon distribution center in Edwardsville, IL on Friday night.

  • ‘A third’ of warehouse collapsed

    A reporter said “several dozen emergency crews” were on scene at the Amazon Warehouse on Gateway Commerce Center Drive in Illinois.

    Approximately “a third of the warehouse is torn down and damaged from either straight by line winds or tornado,” KMOV’s Jenna Rae wrote in a tweet.

    She also noted that some people were trapped, and it was later reported that six people died.

  • At least two killed in Arkansas nursing home

    Local ABC affiliate KAIT said two people were killed and five others hurt in a “mass casualty” event at Monette Manor nursing home after the tornado moved through the Mississippi County area.

    About 20 people were initially trapped at the facility, which has 90 beds, according to the news station.

    Debris covered the parking lot, with major damage visible to the building and its roof.

  • Hundreds of miles of damage

    The tornado started in Arkansas on Friday night at about 9pm EST and was in Kentucky by midnight EST.

  • Shelter opened in Kentucky

    Officials have opened a shelter at Mayfield High School for those displaced after a tornado hit Kentucky.

  • Six confirmed fatalities at Amazon facility

    The Edwardsville Fire Chief confirmed that there were six fatalities after one of the tornadoes hit an Amazon warehouse.

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