Reports: Severe thunderstorm damages buildings in eastern Mississippi

By Chaffin Mitchell, AccuWeather staff writer
April 14, 2018, 11:20:52 PM EDT

As of 10:07 p.m. CDT Saturday, this story is no longer being updated.

The greatest risk for violent storms on Saturday and Saturday night will extend from western and central Tennessee to Mississippi, Alabama, southeastern Louisiana and the Florida Panhandle.

People spending time outdoors will not only need to stay up-to-date with the latest severe weather warnings, but also the potential for flash flooding on area roadways and along streams and creeks.

While damaging winds and heavy, flooding rainfall are expected to be the primary threats, isolated incidents of large hail and tornadoes cannot be ruled out.

Large portions of interstates 10, 20, 55 and 65 lie in Saturday’s threat zone, so motorists should take caution and reduce speeds in blinding downpours and gusty winds.

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3:00 p.m. CDT Saturday:

The line of severe thunderstorms are heading east, making their way past Miss. into Ala. after causing destruction in Meridian, Miss. this afternoon.

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1:30 p.m. CDT Saturday:

Two schools in Meridian, Miss. received damage due to the severe storms.

Damage was reported in one of the school's auditorium and office area. A middle school received damage to the front entrance and awning. Maintenance staff is currently on site assessing the damage.

12:30 p.m. CDT Saturday:

There are reports of downed trees, damaged roofs and a damaged apartment building in Meridian, Miss. due to the severe storms.

According to abc 11 WTOK, fallen trees have blocked parts of Highway 45 near Marion. The roof has been blown off of the George Reese Court apartments in Meridian, as well as damaged houses due to fallen trees.

Magnolia Middle School's auditorium was damaged, and some classrooms may have also been damaged. A house also caught fire on Maple Street in Meridian.

The city of Meridian released this statement:

"There has been significant damage to a large part of the city. At this time, emergency personnel are out accessing damage and more officials have been called in."

10:50 a.m. CDT Saturday:

A line of severe thunderstorms is moving rapidly through Meridian, Mississippi. There is also the potential for isolated incidents of large hail and some brief tornadoes to spin up at times as this line moves eastward.

10:00 a.m. CDT Saturday:

Over 120,000 customers are without power throughout Louisiana, Texas and Mississippi.

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