Dhaka, Bangladesh (BBN)- At least 20 people were killed and over 200 others wounded as a tornado tore through three upazilas (sub-districts) in the country’s Brahmanbaria district on Friday evening.

The twister left a trail of destruction in 20 villages of Brahmanbaria sadar, Bijoynagar and Akhaura upazilas.

The death toll was 20 as of 12:30am on Saturday, according to the control room at the office Brahmanbaria superintendent of police. 

Comilla-Sylhet highway remained closed, as uprooted trees and wrecked vehicles littered the road. 

Md Mohsin Bhuiyan, who is in charge of Akhaura Railway Junction locomotive shed, reportedly said rail communications between the capital and three districts — Chittagong, Sylhet and Noakhali — were suspended, as tracks were blocked by trees felled by the fierce storm.

At least five people were killed in Brahmanbaria sadar upazila, five more in Akhaura upazila, and three on Comilla-Sylhet highway when trees collapsed on vehicles and some vehicles lost control and crashed during the storm, according to reports.

The district has already administration promised BDT 20,000 for the families of those killed, and BDT 5,000, one bundle of corrugated iron sheets and 20kg of rice for those injured as immediate relief.

Border Guard Bangladesh 12 Battalion commanding officer Lt Col Maksudul Alam said nine BGB teams including a medical team had been deployed in the affected areas and an army team was on standby.

Meanwhile, Fire Service and Civil Defence officials said around 50 firemen from five stations were engaged in the rescue efforts and clearing the roads of debris.

BBN/SSR/AD-23Mar13-7:40 am (BST)