At least three dead in North Carolina tornado

A damaged vehicle sits among debris after a deadly tornado tore through Brunswick County, N.C., Tuesday, Feb. 16, 2021. And then it sounded like a train, a freight train coming through...

Officials say the twister struck shortly before midnight Monday just inland from the barrier island of Ocean Isle Beach.

Dozens of homes were damaged, Gov. Roy Cooper tweeted. He will visit the county on Wednesday and survey damage in the Ocean Ridge Plantation neighborhood, where most of the damage occurred.

Sheriff John Ingram described the damage as "a lot of destruction". She was meeting Tuesday with an insurance representative to discuss repairs.

The massive winter storm that overwhelmed a Southwestern power grid and immobilized the Southern Plains was carrying heavy snow and freezing rain eastward, with bad weather spreading through into New England and the Deep South, the National Weather Service said.

"By that time, I pretty much knew what was going on", Clemmons said. Not severe weather at all. Hidalgo, the top elected official in Houston, said she didn't believe any of the vaccines were lost.

Mark Willis, meteorologist in charge for The National Weather Service's office in nearby Wilmington, said the same cold front bringing freezing temperatures, ice and snow from Canada to Mexico created conditions favourable to tornadoes in North Carolina, where it pushed up against a warm front from the Gulf of Mexico.

Steve McCreedy, 69, said he and his wife were awakened by their dog and dove into a closet of their Ocean Ridge home as they heard their windows shattering and trees snapping outside.

The National Weather Service in Wilmington confirmed Tuesday the tornado "has been rated as a high-end EF3 on the Enhanced Fujita damage scale with winds estimated at 160 miles per hour".

"But I've never had a storm just stop like that and hear the wind like that and have the floor feel like that ever before". "And all of a sudden I just started hearing the rumbling, like they say, the train getting louder and louder", he said. And we dove in there.

"It feels wonderful. I'm very grateful", said Harry Golen, a 19-year-old sophomore who waited for almost four hours with his friends, much of it in the frigid cold, and was among the last people to get the shots, which otherwise wouldn't have reached students until March or April.

One of Clemmons' neighbors, 54-year-old electrician Tim Long, said the rear of his house fell away as he and his wife took shelter in a bathroom.

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