The death toll is expected to rise as drones and search parties continue to look for survivors, hours after at least two devastating tornadoes touched down in Lee County, Alabama this Sunday, March 3. As RadarOnline.com has learned, at least 23 people, including young children, were killed by the horrific natural disasters. The tornadoes' wind speeds were between 136mph and 165mph, according to various reports, and their extreme force demolished homes, businesses, streets and cars. In a morning news conference, Lee County Sheriff Jay Jones said most of the damage occurred in an area along Alabama Highway 51 in Beauregard, which is about a half-mile wide. Click through the gallery to see the terrifying scenes of destruction.
"I have not seen this level of destruction ever in my experience here in Lee County," Lee County Sheriff Jay Jones told reporters this Monday, March 4, one day after the tornadoes devastated Alabama.
"We have not had anything of this nature before," Jones continued.
As Radar has learned, the destruction caused by the tornadoes was even greater in Beauregard because of its conditions. The rural area was filled with small wooden houses and mobile homes — most of which were torn apart by the harsh winds.
A local mayor told Fox News this Sunday: "We had to cut our way in with chainsaws and tractors to get to these people and make sure everyone was okay. We had some elderly people that were trapped in their houses." Describing the rescue efforts, he continued: "Words cannot describe it. Trailer homes turned upside down, the damage is unbelievable."
Over 100 rescuers went out to search for survivors this Monday morning, and more are expected to join. Canine teams and drones equipped with heat-sensors are also assisting in the search.
The National Weather Service confirmed late Sunday a tornado with at least an F3 rating was to blame for the chaos.
"To the great people of Alabama and surrounding areas: Please be careful and safe. Tornadoes and storms were truly violent and more could be coming. To the families and friends of the victims, and to the injured, God bless you all!" Wrote President Donald Trump on Twitter.
No tornado-related deaths have been reported outside of Lee County. Stay with Radar for updates.
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