The South was hit hard Thursday as severe storms swept across the region, leaving at least seven people dead, 45,000 homes and businesses without power, and destruction in their wake. Governors in Alabama and Georgia declared states of emergency in affected areas as recovery and cleanup operations began.
In Autauga County, Alabama, six people were killed and at least 20 homes were damaged or destroyed. A 5-year-old in Butts County, Georgia, was killed after a tree fell on top of a car. Selma, Alabama, was hit particularly hard with a huge tornado that left behind widespread destruction and was likely on the ground for at least 50 miles. Deborah Brown, who was at a tax office, had to rush to safety after seeing what looked like a tornado rolling down the street.
Governors Kay Ivey of Alabama and Brian Kemp of Georgia sent their thoughts and prayers to those impacted by the severe weather.