Dozens injured, roofs ripped off homes, as tornado tears through Mississippi, Alabama

Authorities are assessing the damage caused by a series of tornados which ripped through the US state of Mississippi on Sunday. The powerful twisters left dozens of people wounded and destroyed hundreds of homes.

The weather service counted three separate twisters throughout the state.

A tornado believed to be at least a mile wide hit the city of Hattiesburg, along with its university campus. The university released a statement stating that no one had been hurt.

Ten people were injured in neighboring Forrest County, while three others were injured in Marion County. No deaths were reported.

In the nearby town of Petal, the storm destroyed over 100 homes, with people sustaining only minor injuries.

Mississippi Governor Phil Bryant declared a state of emergency in all seven counties hit by severe weather and power outages. 

As local residents aim to clean up the wreckage the tornadoes left behind, the weather forecast looks to be anything but ideal.

"The bad thing is, it keeps raining," Mississippi Emergency Management spokesman Greg Flynn told Reuters. "It's supposed to rain all day today and then all day tomorrow."

"We've already had flash-flooding issues and the creeks and the streams are all overtopped. It's just going to make things a lot more difficult in the recovery process."

from twitter by @studentprintz, photo by Jana Edwards
from twitter by @studentprintz, photo by Jana Edwards

In the neighboring state of Alabama, authorities indicated that a series of seven tornadoes hit, including one that damaged 46 homes in Clark County.

However, emergency officials pointed out to AP that on the whole, the injuries weren’t really serious, with most of the people “walking wounded.”

The disaster follows a massive blizzard that killed at least nine people in the American northeast, leaving hundreds of homes destroyed. Authorities declared an emergency in five states.

from twitter by @alastormspotter Scott McClellan
from twitter by @alastormspotter Scott McClellan
Hattiesburg′s university campus after the storm, from twitter by @studentprintz.
Hattiesburg's university campus after the storm, from twitter by @studentprintz.
from twitter by @yaboydk
from twitter by @yaboydk
from twitter by @RyanMooreMS
from twitter by @RyanMooreMS