Tornado renders 56K without electricity

UPDATE: About 7,400 LG&E customers were still without power Tuesday morning. According to LG&E, only about 10 customers had reported outages in Jefferson County.

Statewide, more than 23,600 outages were reported Tuesday morning in Kentucky, including about 5,200 outages in Graves County, where the town of Mayfield was destroyed, the website reported.

LOUISVILLE, Ky. – The series of tornadoes that ripped through western Kentucky early Saturday morning left a trail of damage and knocked out power to tens of thousands of people across the Commonwealth.

Speaking at a 5 a.m. news conference, Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear said 56,854 people in the state were without power as of 4:45 a.m. The death toll from the storm, he said, would likely exceed 70 and increase by 100 or more casualties.

“Some regions have been affected in ways that are difficult to describe,” he said.

Live updates:Kentucky continues to dig tornadoes as death toll rises

‘Divine Intervention’:More than 70 elderly residents survive the destruction of the Mayfield retirement home

Storms have hit Louisville, but the state’s largest city appears to have been spared the worst damage. Still, more than 22,000 Louisville Gas & Electric customers appeared to be without power just before 7 a.m., according to an LG&E outage map.

Outage maps in other hard-hit areas, including Mayfield and Bowling Green, were unavailable around 6.30am.

A map shown by Beshear at its 5 a.m. press conference showed power outages were at their worst in western Kentucky — particularly in Hopkins, Muhlenberg and Ohio counties, though data from some far western counties were unavailable.

That area was “very, very hard hit,” Beshear said, and outages extended east into the Louisville and Lexington areas.

In Louisville, according to a social media post by LG&E, the storms “have caused a number of power lines to come down which we are tackling.”

The utility company urged affected users to report downed wires by calling 502-589-1444 or 800-331-7370.

After:Gov. Andy Beshear says ‘dozens’ dead at tornado-hit factory Mayfield

This story has been updated.

Lucas Aulbach can be reached at [email protected], 502-582-4649 or on Twitter @LucasAulbach.

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