Violent storms pound Midwest; 9 dead

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Tornado season normally starts in March, but it isn’t unusual to see severe storms earlier in the year.

The system also lashed parts of Kansas, Arkansas, Oklahoma and Kentucky, where three buildings belonging to an Elizabethtown trucking company were heavily damaged. Three trailers parked in a lot outside were pushed into each other, toppled like dominoes.

“It picked the whole building up,” said Jim Owen, son of the owner of Harry Owen Trucking. “It would take a group of 20 men five days with equipment to tear that down.”

The Midwest and South were to get a reprieve from the menacing weather Thursday, ahead of another strong storm system expected Friday.

Ryan Jewell, a meteorologist with the Storm Prediction Center in Norman, Okla., said the approaching system is forecast to take a similar path as Wednesday’s storms and has the potential for even more damage.

On Friday, he said, both the Midwest and South would be “right in the bull’s eye.”

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Salter reported from Branson, Mo. AP photographer Mark Schiefelbein in Branson and writer Janet Capiello in Louisville, Ky., also contributed to this report.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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