The National Weather Service in Birmingham confirmed 4 tornadoes touched down in Central Alabama on March 3, 2019, including deadly EF-4 which struck Lee County leaving at least 23 people dead and several missing.
The office performed preliminary surveys on March 4, reporting the Beauregard-Smiths Station tornado in Lee County as EF-4 with winds of 273 km/h (170 mph).
The second tornado, which touched down south of Tuskegee in Macon County and continued into Lee County, has a preliminary rating of EF-2 with winds of 185 km/h (115 mph). The third tornado hit County Road 79 in Barbour County and was rated an EF-2. The fourth tornado hit Eufaula in Barber County and was rated at least EF-2.
These were just 4 of dozens of tornadoes that hit Alabama, Georgia and Florida on March 3 amid severe weather outbreak.
The strongest tornado was EF-4 in Lee County, AL with winds of 273 km/h (170 mph), a width of at least 1 400 m (0.87 miles) and a track of 38 km (24 miles).
This 'violent' EF-4 tornado left at least 23 people dead and marked the first EF-4 tornado touch down in the United States since April 29, 2017.
March 3, 2019 is now the deadliest Alabama tornado day since 2011 when more than 200 people were killed in Tuscaloosa-Birmingham tornado and the deadliest US tornado day since May 20, 2013 Newcastle-OKC-Moore tornado.
During the entire 2018, tornadoes in the United States killed 10 people.
Featured image: Lee County, Alabama tornado damage - March 3, 2019. Credit: Reed Timmer