Tornadoes, high winds pound Midwest

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Violent storms visited the Plains states Thursday evening for the fourth day in a row..

Powerful tornadoes struck parts of Missouri Wednesday night. The storms eventually coalesced into a thunderstorm system that later raked portions of Illinois, Indiana and northern Ohio early Thursday, with high winds and heavy rain. Pockets of wind damage were reported across northwest and northeast Ohio.

A tornado slammed into Golden City, Missouri, 30 miles northeast of Joplin, Wednesday evening, killing three persons, which coincided with the 8-year anniversary of the deadly EF5 tornado of 2011 that devastated Joplin, rsulting in 161 deaths.

A strong, destructive EF 3 tornado, with 160 mph winds, hit Jefferson City shortly before midnight local time, causing heavy damage, after an emergency warning was issued for the capital city. Trees were stripped of leaves and bark and utility poles were snapped in two. Roofs were torn off buildings in an apartment complex and surrounding homes.

Fallen trees and downed power lines blocked travel Nineteen people were treated at local hospitals for injuries incurred by the storm. The damage extended for three square miles, according to city officials.

Several homes in Illinois were damaged by high winds and a tornado. 

There were more than 30 reports of tornadoes Wednesday, raising the total more than 100 since Monday. Major flooding continues along several rivers in the middle of the country. The Missouri River is forecasted to crest 9.5 feet above flood stage in Jefferson City on Friday.

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