A late-winter severe weather outbreak has struck the state of Iowa.

Several rounds of strong thunderstorms have hit across Iowa today with multiple reports of confirmed tornadoes. Unfortunately, in the Winterset area of Madison County, authorities now confirm at least seven people have been killed, including four adults and two children under age 5. The fatalities did not all occur in the same location. The announcement came in a 9 p.m. press conference carried live by KCCI-TV in Des Moines. The lives were lost during a tornado that struck Winterset at approximately 4:30 p.m. Saturday afternoon.

In addition to the fatalities, Winterset officials announced four other adults were injured. Three suffered serious injuries and one sustained life-threatening injuries.

KCRG reports a seventh person was killed in southeast Iowa, near Chariton.

The video below was posted by WHO-13 in Des Moines. It shows a tornado approaching that area this afternoon.

A number of tornadoes have been reported throughout the day from southwest Iowa up into the central part of the state.

We also know there is damage in the Vinton area of Benton County this evening as severe storms continue to race through the area just ahead of a strong cold front. According to our news partner, KCRG TV-9, the worst damage is in the northwestern part of Vinton. The Red Cross is on the way to the area to provide shelter for those impacted.

KCRG says there are 33 preliminary tornado reports from today, with that number likely to go down.

We'll update this story as more information becomes available. If you can safely take photos of damage in your area, please post them below.

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