Multiple tornadoes tear through the central United States, destroying homes

WASHINGTON (AFP) - Multiple tornadoes tore through the central United States on Wednesday, destroying homes and felling trees amid heavy rains that triggered local flooding, the US media reported.

There were no immediate reports of fatalities.

The Weather Channel said at least 29 tornado sightings had been reported across the states of Kansas, Nebraska, Texas and in Oklahoma, with multiple homes destroyed in Oklahoma.

Footage from a local affiliate broadcast on CNN showed significant destruction in the state, including a building ravaged by the storm system, with belongings scattered across a lawn.

"Storm spotter groups and emergency management personnel in the risk areas should be ready for severe weather operations," the National Weather Service warned in a statement.

"Severe weather will remain a daily threat for the Plains and Midwest through (the) weekend thanks to a stubbornly slow-moving weather pattern across North America.

"Tornado watches have been issued for parts of Nebraska, Kansas, Oklahoma and Texas. In those watch areas, several tornadoes have been reported," it added.

Flooding was reported in Moore, Oklahoma and several houses sustained tornado damage in Bridge Creek, KOCO television reported.

The city of Norman also took a hit with the I-35 highway shut down due to downed power lines, the report said.

An image from the local newspaper, The Norman Transcript, showed part of the exterior of the city's Norman Hotel ripped off by a tornado.

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