Two dead as violent storm lashes Great Smoky Mountains park

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TOWNSEND, Tenn. (AP) — At least two people have been killed as a violent thunderstorm struck the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

Park spokeswoman Melissa Cobern says a man on a motorcycle was killed as was a 41-year-old woman who was struck by a falling tree. The names of the victims were withheld while their family members were told.

The storms struck Thursday evening at the west end of the 500,000-acre park on the Tennessee-North Carolina border. Most of the damage appeared to be in the popular Cades Cove area of the park and in communities just outside the park boundaries.

The storm hit around 6 p.m., blowing down many trees from Metcalf Bottoms across Cades Cove to the Abrams Creek section of the park.

Multiple injuries were reported.

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Information from: The Knoxville News Sentinel, http://www.knoxnews.com