UPDATE as of 3:45PM

Tornadoes are tearing through Mississippi.

One massive twister is blamed for destroying a number of businesses and homes in Tupelo.

So far there are no reports of deaths.  Strong storms are also slamming the St. Louis area.



Tornado watches are in effect from Louisiana to parts of Kentucky and Virginia.

Mississippi Governor Phil Bryant is declaring a state of emergency in his state due to a forecast of severe weather.

A dangerous multi-vortex tornado is bearing down on Tupelo, Mississippi. Residents are being told to shelter in a "tornado-safe" place.

Violent storms are threatening millions of people from the Midwest to the Gulf Coast.

Cities from Des Moines, Iowa to Louisville, Kentucky to Nashville, Tennessee and New Orleans are all gearing up for possibly severe thunderstorms that could drop damaging hail and spawn twisters.