A tornado caused significant damage late Friday in the northwest Arkansas town of Mountainburg. Brad Thomas of Crawford County's Department of Emergency Management told CBS News that emergency crews were working to rescue people trapped in their homes.
One person was injured inside a vehicle, Thomas said. He said authorities are still accessing the damage, but said it is not looking good.
His department warned residents to avoid viewing the damage themselves because it will interfere with response efforts. It added that the Mountainburg Primary School was being used as a shelter.
Tornado watches and warnings are up across the central U.S., and tornadoes could pop up in Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, Louisiana and Minnesota.
Aerial footage from CBS affiliate KFSM-TV showed downed power lines and damage to several buildings. The station reports emergency crews were going house to house to see if anyone is injured.
No damage was reported to the city's water treatment plant besides fences surrounding it, a Fort Smith Utilities spokesperson told KFSM-TV.