Undated (AP) _ Severe thunderstorms in Louisiana brought a tornado that destroyed a school gymnasium and damaged about 30 homes, injuring three people, as well as high winds that forced a nuclear plant to shut down Thursday.

Wind tore sheet metal siding from a building housing generator turbines at the River Bend plant, 30 miles northwest of Baton Rouge, hitting an electrical transformer and triggering an automatic shutdown, said Gulf States Utilities spokesman Bill Benedetto.

''This is the non-nuclear portion of the plant,'' Benedetto said. There were no injuries and there was no danger to the public. Officials were considering whether to restart the plant or wait until after refueling scheduled for March 15.

A tornado touched down in Acadia Parish in southwestern Louisiana around midnight Wednesday. Three injuries were reported in the town of Iota, including an infant hospitalized in stable condition after winds blew over a trailer home.

''A gymnasium at the Iota Junior High School was completely demolished, hundreds of trees were uprooted and considerable damage was done to 25 to 30 homes,'' the Sheriff's Office said in a statement.