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Area near Little Rock, Arkansas, hit by ‘large, extremely dangerous’ tornado

<i>google</i><br/>A tornado emergency has been declared by the National Weather Service office in Little Rock
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A tornado emergency has been declared by the National Weather Service office in Little Rock

By Steve Almasy, Brandon Miller and Chris Boyette, CNN

A storm system lashing states from Oklahoma into the Midwest brought tornadoes and hail to Arkansas Monday.

A tornado emergency was declared by the National Weather Service office in Little Rock, Arkansas, for a confirmed large and destructive tornado.

“A large, extremely dangerous, and potentially deadly tornado is on the ground,” the National Weather Service said in a tweet at 8:34 p.m. CT. “To protect your life, TAKE COVER NOW!”

The weather service said the tornado was reported by an observer at Little Rock Air Force Base.

At 8:19 p.m. CT, the weather service reported the tornado was located over Olmstead, or near the air base, moving east at 35 mph. Olmstead is about 15 miles north of downtown Little Rock.

As the storm system moved through the state, several tornado warnings were issued and the weather service’s Storm Prediction Center said there were five tornado reports in Arkansas.

There were more than two dozen hail reports in Arkansas and Oklahoma.

The University of Central Arkansas canceled Tuesday classes after the severe weather.

“Due to a power outage and some isolated flooding on campus, all classes are canceled on Tuesday, April 12. The campus will remain open and business operations will continue,” the university said in a tweet. The university is located in Conway, Arkansas, just over 30 miles north of Little Rock.

The weather service also issued a severe thunderstorm watch for parts of Arkansas, Mississippi and Tennessee, including the city of Memphis, until 4 a.m.

This is a developing story and will be updated.

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