Twisters Rip Apart Midwestern Neighborhoods | NECN

Twisters Rip Apart Midwestern Neighborhoods

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Forecasters say it could be a long and dangerous 24 hours from Ohio through the deep south (Published Thursday, Jan. 16, 2014)

    (NECN/NBC News, Jay Gray, Nashville, Tenn.) - Just two days after a tornado outbreak tore a path of destruction across the Midwest, parts of the south are in Mother Nature's crosshairs.

    If there is a target for these storms, this area could be the bull's eye. Storms are building right now after delivering an initial strike a bit earlier to the south.

    The first hit came as a pair of violent tornadoes touched down mid-morning in northern Alabama.

    "By the time I ran from one end of the house to the other my big garage doors were sucking in air and I made it down to the shelter. It was over pretty quick," said Luanne Scrimsher.

    But the twisters were on the ground long enough to rip apart neighborhoods, splintering homes and scattering debris and downing powerlines for miles.

    Mother Nature's assault in Alabama is the start of what forecasters said would be a long and dangerous 24-hours from Ohio through the deep south.

    Storm chasers got a glimpse of this funnel cloud outside Chattanooga, Tenn.

    Friday afternoon, clouds pushed across the Nashville skyline, an area the national weather service warned could be one of the hardest hit.

    "We're in a high risk zone and every time we've been in a high risk zone we've have severe weather, so we need to take this seriously."

    Perspective they are keenly aware of in Harrisburg, Ill. where the tornado sirens and ominous dark clouds provided a painful reminder of what happened two days ago and the possibility of what could be next.

    With severe warnings issued, as a precaution, more than 20 school districts across tornado alley sent students home early Friday.