At least 23 people are dead following a string of deadly tornadoes ripped through eastern Alabama late Sunday night.

 “I would describe the damage that we’ve seen in the area as catastrophic,” says Lee County Sheriff Jay Jones.

 The National Weather Service confirmed Monday that an EF-4 twister with winds up to 170-miles-an-hour cut a path a mile wide and more than 20-miles long in the hardest hit area.

 As crews clear away what they can, rescue teams continue their search. Deputies won’t say how many people are still unaccounted for, but acknowledge the number is significant.

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