15:19 31-07-2014
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At least 17 killed as tornadoes rip through Arkansas, Oklahoma

Bishkek (AKIpress) - tornado Tornadoes ripped through the south-central United States on Sunday, killing at least 17 people in Arkansas and Oklahoma and wiping out entire neighborhoods, authorities told Reuters as rescue workers searched in darkness for survivors.

Winds ripped houses off their foundations and flipped cars on top of the rubble in the small town of Vilonia in central Arkansas' Faulkner county, one of the worst-hit communities, television pictures showed.

Arkansas authorities said at least 10 people had died in Faulkner and six more across the state - the first reported fatalities of this year's tornado season. Another person was killed in neighboring Oklahoma, said the sheriff's department.

Searchers were continuing to dig through rubble in Vilonia and a spokesman for the County Sheriff's office said there was a "mass casualty situation".


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