2 tornadoes hit Tennessee, survey teams confirm - WKRN News 2

2 tornadoes hit Tennessee, survey teams confirm

Posted: Updated: March 1, 2012 3:27 PM CST

Tornadoes have been confirmed in DeKalb and Cumberland counties, according National Weather Service storm surveyors sent out Thursday to assess damage.

Three people died in the storms, which hit late Wednesday afternoon and evening.

The tornado in Cumberland County, where two women lost their lives, was an EF-2 twister with maximum wind speeds of 125 miles-per-hour.

The tornado had a width of 250 yards and caused damage to more than 50 homes in the Rinnie community.

Lisa Evans, 46, and Carolyn Jones, a grandmother married to her husband for more than 50 years, died when the storm hit just before 6 p.m. local time.

Jones' grandson, Spc. Steven Skaggs, a soldier stationed at Ft. Campbell, Kentucky, said Thursday that Jones' husband, Harold, was hospitalized with fractured ribs, a black eye and bruises after he was rescued from beneath the debris of their brick and wood home.

There are no tornado sirens in the Rinnie community.
In DeKalb County, forecasters said Thursday an EF-1 tornado with maximum wind speeds of 90 miles-per-hour touched down just after 3 p.m. about one mile northwest of Smithville.

The twister was on the ground along Highway 83 for approximately 13 miles before ending seven miles northwest of Sparta in White County.

The maximum path width of the storm was 200 yards.

Damage mainly consisted of snapped or uprooted trees, minor roof damage and trees blown over onto structures.  Some smaller barns and sheds were damaged as well, the weather service said.

The most significant damage was located on the west side of Center Hill Lake where a home on stilts was blown over and destroyed, resulting in one death.

Authorities said a woman was trapped in the remains of her Smithville home, which was thrown over a hillside onto a steep and unstable embankment.

The woman's body was recovered late Thursday afternoon.

No one was else was injured in DeKalb County.

The American Red Cross Thursday morning sent volunteers to DeKalb County to assist with storm damage.

"We are working closely with local emergency officials to assess damage and to assist those affected by the storm as well as those helping with clean-up efforts," Kathy Nesmith, Executive Director for the Warren County Chapter of the American Red Cross, said in a release.

To find an open Red Cross shelter, visit RedCross.org or call 1-800-RED-CROSS.

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