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A tree that fell on a home carport damaged a vehicle during a storm in Central, Louisiana. No injuries were reported, according to Central Fire Department. Photo: Central Fire Department/Twitter

Strong storms lashed the South early Saturday, spawning at least one tornado and unleashing powerful winds and hail. And forecasters warned more severe weather was expected to hit parts of the region in the coming hours.

Details: Thousands of customers lost power in Florida, Mississippi, Arkansas, Texas and Louisiana, according to tracking site poweroutage.us. An F3 tornado that hit St Landry Parish, Louisiana, killed one person and wounded seven others.

A tweet previously embedded here has been deleted or was tweeted from an account that has been suspended or deleted.
  • The National Weather Service said 15 homes were damaged or destroyed, along with several other buildings, as the tornado downed power lines and trees.

In Mississippi, a suspected tornado tore down power lines and trees in Rankin County, per AP.

In Orange Beach, Alabama, hail the size of baseballs damaged vehicles, Al.com reports.

In Panama City Beach, Florida, authorities said "high winds took the roof off" a convenience store and damaged a house.

  • A water spout was spotted over the Gulf in the morning, the City of Panama City Beach said. A Twitter user shared footage of the suspected tornado:
A tweet previously embedded here has been deleted or was tweeted from an account that has been suspended or deleted.

What to expect: Severe thunderstorms were possible Saturday evening from western North Carolina into southeast West Virginia, the NWS said.

  • "Strong storms may also develop later tonight across portions of northern Florida," the agency added.

Go deeper

DiDi to delist from NYSE under Chinese govt pressure

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Chinese ride-hail giant DiDi said it will delist from the New York Stock Exchange, following a Chinese government crackdown on foreign listings.

Why it matters: This reflects how geopolitical tensions are bleeding into the capital markets.

Updated 22 mins ago - Health

Omicron cases confirmed in 5 U.S. states

A healthcare worker inserts a Covid-19 rapid test into a machine in Denver, Colorado. Photo: Daniel Brenner/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Hawaii became on Thursday the fifth state to confirm the newly discovered Omicron variant after New York announced five new cases earlier in the day.

The latest: In Hawaii, the variant was found in an unvaccinated O'ahu resident with moderate symptoms who had previously been infected with COVID-19, per a state health department statement. The variant has also been confirmed in California, Colorado and Minnesota.

Senate Dems receive max donations from Nord Stream 2 lobbyist

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

A major Democratic donor and Nord Stream 2 lobbyist has made maximum campaign contributions this year to Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and vulnerable Senate Democrats, campaign finance records show.

Why it matters: If pressure from the White House to vote against reimposing sanctions on the Russia-backed natural gas pipeline weren't enough, Democrats who back such legislation also will be at loggerheads with one of their party's top fundraisers.