Deadly tornadoes in US South

Evacuations in St. Louis County, Missouri (AP)

Residents in the American South and Midwest spent New Year’s Day sifting through the wreckage wrought by tornadoes that killed four people in Missouri and three in Arkansas.

Officials have confirmed three tornadoes ripped through central Mississippi on New Year’s Eve, causing heavy damage and injuring three people.

The U.S. Weather Service says unusually warm air from the Gulf of Mexico helped create the instability that allows tornadoes to develop.

Tornadoes typically impact this region in late winter and early spring.

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