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A tornado early Saturday flattened buildings and injured three people as thunderstorms swept across the Midwest.

Six houses and three businesses were destroyed, said a spokesman for Gov. Jim Edgar.

The twister also heavily damaged 26 houses and two apartment buildings and did minor damage to 20 to 30 other houses.

Authorities said there was no warning before the tornado hit the a city of 18,000 people in east-central Illinois,

The damage came as a line of thunderstorms rolled across the Midwest during the night and Saturday morning, hitting parts of Illinois, Indiana, southern Michigan and northwestern Ohio.

One tornado was reported in northwestern Indiana's Allen County, but there were no immediate reports of damage there. Wind also overturned a truck on Detroit's Ambassador Bridge, which connects it with Windsor, Ont.

High wind also snapped utility poles in northern Kentucky, postponing a $600,000 horse race at Turfway Park in Florence, Ky.

At Mattoon, a 9-year-old girl was listed in serious condition at Sarah Bush-Lincoln Hospital.

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