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Tornado recovery efforts continue in Kentucky, neighboring states as death toll rises to 88

Kentucky tornadoes
Posted at 5:18 AM, Dec 14, 2021
and last updated 2021-12-14 11:57:57-05

Communities in western Kentucky and in nearby states will resume rescue and recovery efforts Tuesday from last week's deadly outbreak of tornadoes that killed dozens of people.

Officials are still trying to assess just how much damage the storms afflicted when they blew through the region late Friday night.

On Monday, Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear told reporters that 74 Kentuckians were killed as a result of the storms but noted that at least 100 people are still unaccounted for or missing. The Associated Press reports that the storms killed 14 people in Arkansas, Illinois, Missouri and Tennessee, bringing the current death toll from the weather events to 88.

Beshear on Monday estimated that as many as 1,000 homes had been destroyed in Friday's storms, leaving an untold number of Kentuckians homeless.

As of early Tuesday morning, PowerOutage.us reports that about 23,000 customers in the Bluegrass State are still without power. An additional 2,000 people are still without power in neighboring states.

Beshear did report some good news on Tuesday, noting that officials have now accounted for all the employees who were working at a Mayfield candle factory Friday when a tornado hit it. Though eight workers lost their lives, officials initially feared the death toll in the factory would be much higher.

President Joe Biden will travel to Kentucky on Wednesday. He is expected to visit Mayfield and Dawson Springs, two of the hardest-hit areas in Kentucky.