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Deadly EF-3 tornado hits Ruston, rips through Louisiana Tech University campus, Louisiana

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An EF-3 tornado hit the city of Ruston and Louisiana Tech University campus early Thursday morning (local time), April 25, 2019. Two people have lost their lives in the city.

Ruston Mayor Ronny Walker confirmed the two fatalities but declined to identify them. "It's bad; real bad," Walker said. "We took a direct hit."

Much of the damage occurred along Tech Drive and Cypress Springs subdivision south of Interstate 20, but Walker said there was damage throughout the city, NewsStar reports.

While there were no students injured on the campus, a significant amount of damage occurred, LTU said.

"Power lines and trees are down in some areas on and near campus. In some areas, traveling is hazardous."

"If you do not live on campus, please do not come to campus. Essential personnel will be contacted by their supervisor about reporting to work," the University said.

All classes are canceled today, but campus food services will be open for students.

Severe thunderstorms capable of damaging winds, large hail, and a few tornadoes will be likely Thursday into Thursday night over the Deep South and northern Gulf Coast, NWS warns.

 In addition, heavy rain may produce flash flooding of low lying areas. The severe weather and heavy rain threat will shift to the Mid Atlantic and Southeast U.S. on Friday.

Featured image credit: Holly Chaisson (@HollyChaisson)

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