UPDATE: Death Toll Rises to Five After Tornado Outbreak
Washington Co., IL - Officials say they have confirmed that a fifth person died when tornadoes hit central and southern Illinois.
Melanie Arnold of the Illinois Emergency Management Agency says the person was killed in Washington when a tornado struck that central Illinois community on Sunday. She did not have any details about the victim.
Earlier in the day, the county coroner in Washington County in southern Illinois said that an elderly man and his sister died when a tornado struck their farm house in the town of New Minden, about 50 miles southeast of St. Louis.
Tornado warnings are still in effect across the Upper Midwestern states Sunday, as an intense storm system has moved through the region, including the Ohio Valley, with dangerous tornadoes.
Peoria has been hit by a violent tornado, and pictures via storm chasers from Twitter show devastation in other communities as well.
ABC Affiliates are LIVESTREAMING the severe weather outbreak HERE. ABC 13 has switched the LIVE FEED from our Indianapolis affiliate, RTV 6. We will adjust the feed to the hardest hit areas as the system continues to move east.
The Storm Prediction Center has the area under a rare "High Risk" of severe weather, with violent, long-lived tornadoes possible for the rest of Sunday.
While the majority of the dangerous weather will miss the ABC 13 Viewing Area, the trailing cold front underneath the core of the system will drag a line of gusty showers through the mountains late Sunday night and early Monday morning to the rest of the area east of the mountains, though no widespread severe weather is expected.
Still, to our north and west, the situation is ongoing and is very serious.
"Our primary message is this is a dangerous weathers system that has the potential to be extremely deadly and destructive," said Laura Furgione, deputy director of the National Weather Service National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. "Get ready now."
Stay with ABC 13 for the latest developments.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.