A string of violent storms demolished small towns in Indiana and cut off rural communities in Kentucky as an early season tornado outbreak killed more than 30 people, and the death toll rose as daylight broke on today’s search for survivors.

Massive thunderstorms, predicted by forecasters for days, threw off dozens of tornadoes as they raced Friday from the Gulf Coast to the Great Lakes. Twisters crushed blocks of homes, knocked out cellphones and landlines, ripped power lines from broken poles and tossed cars, school buses and tractor-trailers onto roads made impassable by debris.