People living in the South faced a challenging start to their work week Monday as a strong line of severe storms moved across the region, unleashing heavy rains, high winds and large, damaging hail. The storm system with large hail pounded the capital city of Mississippi Monday, busting windows in cars, homes and businesses and leaving a sheet of ice on roadways, parking lots and sidewalks.

A total of 15 counties across Mississippi reported downed trees and other damage by Monday night. An elementary school in Clinton County received some significant roof damage from the storm which resulted in flooding in nearly every classroom. That school will not be opened again until further notice as the cleanup and repair work will take some time to complete.

Hail the size of baseballs and even softballs were reported in Mississippi Monday. Hail that size is a rare occurrence and more so at this time of the year. The large hail was able to break through some buildings’ roofs as it was as big as your fist. The hail caused widespread damage all over Jackson. It did however, melt quickly as the sun was shining shortly after it fell. Thus far, Mississippi officials haven’t asked for any state assistance. They are however, providing assistance to people who need it. People living in Mississippi are used to tornadoes and hurricanes but not to large, widespread hail like what hit yesterday. Those whose homes, businesses or vehicles were damaged by the hail now know just how destructive hail can be and how quickly the damage can occur.

The National Weather Service reported a tornado moved through Rutherford County, Tennessee Monday afternoon. That twister damaged at least ten homes. Another tornado touched down in Dickson County, uprooting several large trees and damaging homes there. Firefighters responded to a blaze at a junior high school after it was struck by lightening Monday afternoon. The students were removed from the building and taken to a nearby school.

Two people in Mississippi were injured Monday when they were struck in the head by large hail. The hailstones were the size of baseballs. There has been no update regarding the condition of the two storm victims. Softball-sized hailstones smashed windows in numerous cars in Clinton and did damage to many homes and businesses across the Jackson metro area. Many roadways were closed across the Jackson area due to downed trees and powerlines & poles. Many motorists were seen traveling home after work with shattered windshield and broken car windows during Monday’s evening rush hour.

Updated: March 19, 2013 — 3:53 pm
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