Severe weather warnings were issued for the parts of the Mid-South and Tennessee River Valley, with tornados expected across the region.
The National Weather Service (NWS) declared a number of tornado warnings in Alabama, with some remaining in effect until 8 p.m. CT, as wild winds shred across the state.
“The most persistent/intense supercells will be capable of producing strong to violent tornadoes, along with very large hail and substantial damaging winds,” the National Weather Service’s Storm Prediction Center wrote Thursday.
Three of the victims who died Thursday were living in a wooden home, while the two other victims were living in mobile homes, according to WBRC6.
Videos posted to social media by safety and weather services showed debris tumbling through the air at incredible speeds.
Pelham police reported damage to several homes in Chandalar, as well as damage to the Civic Center and utility lines down along highways.
The peak activity is not expected until closer to 5 p.m. local time, at which point dozens of tornadoes might form across the South.
In Georgia, damage to homes has stranded some people, leaving them trapped as authorities work to help residents cope with some of the damage to the area.
The strongest storms are predicted to form across parts of Mississippi, Alabama and Southern Tennessee.
Fox News’ Janice Dean contributed to this report.