Watch VideoPlay Video
Tornadoes and violent storms have ripped through seven southern US states, killing at least 280 people. The wild weather is the country's deadliest series of twisters in nearly four decades.
As day broke on Thursday, people in hardest-hit Alabama surveyed flattened, debris-strewn neighborhoods. Rescuers pulled bodies from rubble, after the storms passed Wednesday afternoon and evening.
US President Barack Obama said he will visit Alabama on Friday to assess damage and meet Governor Robert Bentley. Obama declared a state of emergency for Alabama and ordered federal aid.
|Ringgold, Georgia - The inside of a house hit by a tornado is seen here in Ringgold, Georgia, on Thursday, April 28.|
Alabama's state emergency management agency said it had confirmed at least 194 deaths. There were 32 in neighboring Mississippi, 32 in Tennessee, 13 in Georgia, eight in Virginia and one in Kentucky.
|A Red Roof Inn is shown with the roof ripped off of it destroyed by a tornado, Thursday, April 28, 2011, in Ringgold, Georgia.|
In Alabama, where as many as a million people were without power, 2-thousand national guard troops had been sent to search for people still missing.
Search and rescue crews also combed for survivors among the rubble of buildings in northwest Georgia.
|TUSCALOOSA, AL - APRIL 28: In the aftermath of Wednesday night's storms, residents look at damage like this destroyed car on April 28, 2011 in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. As of 4pm, at least 194 deaths were accounted for. The tornado that touched down in Tuscaloosa is estimated to be one mile wide.|
The deadly storms came on the heels of another storm system that killed 10 people in Arkansas and one in Mississippi earlier this week.
|TUSCALOOSA, AL - APRIL 28: In the aftermath of Wednesday night's storms, Alabama Gov. Robert Bentley and his wife, Dianne, take questions from the media on April 28, 2011 in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. As of 4pm, at least 194 deaths were accounted for. The tornado that touched down in Tuscaloosa is estimated to be one mile wide.|