Rescuers have been searching for victims today amid homes smashed to their foundations, after a tornado ripped through a rural Alabama community and killed at least 23 people, including children. Traveling straight down a county road, the twister carved a trail of destruction at least half a mile wide and about a mile long Sunday, overwhelming the Lee County coroner's office, which was forced to call in help from the state. The community of Beauregard is populated by roughly 10,000 people. It is about 60 miles east of Montgomery near the Georgia state line.
The twister, with winds believed to be around 160 mph or higher, was part of a powerful storm system that slashed its way across the Deep South, spawning numerous tornado warnings in Georgia, South Carolina and Florida. The sheriff said children were among the dead, but he didn't know how many. And he said the death toll may rise as the search continues. The National Weather Service has said the tornado was rated an F3, which means wind speeds of 158 mph
to 206 mph.