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Feb 06,2008
U.S. storms claim 22 lives, injure scores
by UPI

MEMPHIS - Storms spawned tornadoes across wide swathes of the U.S. South Super Tuesday night, killing at least 22 people and injuring nearly 100 more, it was reported.

The deadly twisters were reported in Arkansas, Tennessee and Kentucky where they forced polling places to close early and trapped 50 people in a retirement home, while causing widespread damage, including to a university, a shopping mall and a hospital, CNN reported.

The death toll included 13 people in Arkansas -- three of them from the same family in Atkins, Ark. At least six died in Tennessee -- three killed when a Memphis warehouse collapsed among them. Another three were killed in a mobile home park in Muhlenberg County, Ky., the network said.

Matt DeCample, a spokesman for the governor of Arkansas, said rescue workers would be at it all night long.

"Until daylight comes, we're really not going to know the scope of things," he said.

The severe weather also started a fire at a Columbia Gas Natural Gas facility in Green Grove, Tenn. Flames were reported shooting 400-500 feet into the air.

Kentucky emergency spokesman Buddy Rogers said a state of emergency was declared in Muhlenberg County.

Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, a Republican presidential hopeful, offered his condolences to those affected by the natural disaster.

Fellow presidential contender Sen. Hillary Clinton, D-N.Y., also asked her supporters to remember storm victims, CNN said.

© 2008 United Press International. All Rights Reserved.

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