Tornadoes Sweep Across the South

A powerful storm system that started in Oklahoma last Thursday blew through the southern United States over the weekend, spawning nearly 250 reported tornadoes, damaging thousands of structures, and claiming at least 45 lives across six states. Parts of North Carolina were particularly hard-hit by at least 60 tornadoes -- one of which destroyed a Lowe's hardware store with more than 100 employees and customers inside, all of whom survived. The storm system also brought flash flooding and large hailstorms, damaging roads, downing power lines and cell-phone towers, and hampering rescue and clean-up efforts. Gathered here are images of the destruction.

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