Kentucky tornadoes: Death toll likely to pass 100, says governor

The death toll from powerful tornadoes that devastates towns in Kentucky is likely to pass 100, says governor, as hoe of finding survivors wanes.

Andy Beshear said this was the most devastating tornado event in the state’s history, with at least 80 confirmed deaths.

“Nothing that was standing in the direct line of [one] tornado is still standing,” he said.

Fourteen deaths have been reported in four other states.

President Joe Biden has declared a major federal disaster in Kentucky and ordered federal aid to be made available to the hardest-hit areas.

Rescue workers scoured debris for survivors while teams distributed water and generators to residents. More than 300 members of the National Guard were going door to door and removing debris.

“We’re still hoping as we move forward for some miracles to find more people,” said the governor during a visit to the town of Mayfield, one of the hardest hit.

However, no-one has been found alive since Saturday morning.

Beshear said a tornado has wrecked places all along its 365km path. Thousands of people had their homes destroyed though the exact number was still not clear.

Previously, the longest a tornado had travelled along the ground in the US was a 219-mile storm in Missouri in March 1925 that claimed the lives of 695 people. Such major events outside of the spring and summer months are extremely rare.

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