9 dead after tornadoes hit Tennessee ahead of Super Tuesday vote

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New York – At least nine people were killed and many others injured after tornadoes ripped through the south-eastern U.S. state Tennessee on Tuesday.

It was the same day the state is due vote in the Super Tuesday Democratic primaries.

Tennessee Governor Bill Lee said “we have had loss life all across the state. A very difficult situation.

“We have deployed teams across the state in a search and rescue effort find those who were missing.’’

According local broadcaster WKRN the severe weather caused extensive damage, destroying homes, businesses and airplane hangars, and littering motorways with overturned vehicles.

The tornadoes also left tens thousands of residents without power.

Tennessee is one 14 states to vote in the Democratic primaries on Tuesday, and state officials were scrambling to ensure residents can still get to the polls after the storm, broadcaster reported.

State capital Nashville was badly hit, with the fire department tweeting that it was responding to around 40 structure collapses.

Nashville Mayor John Cooper said on Twitter “Nashville is hurting, and our community has been devastated. My heart goes out to those who have lost loved ones.’’