Massive storms create historic flooding, damage and death from Texas through Alabama

Severe weather map

Severe weather map

“Ongoing major to historic flooding is likely to continue in many areas, with additional Flash Flooding likely where more heavy rain falls though tonight” , says the National Weather Service. Seven people died in the greater Dallas area as a storm system brought tornadoes and flooding on Saturday, increasing the death toll from harsh weather in the southern United States this week to 25, according to officials and local media.

A church was severely damaged in Holly Springs, Miss.

A church was severely damaged in Holly Springs, Miss.

The National Weather Service in Dallas-Fort Worth determined Sunday that the destruction left behind in hard-hit Garland was the work of an EF-4 tornado, which typically has wind gusts of between 166 and 200 mph. The agency also said the damage left behind in nearby Rowlett was from a tornado that was at least EF-3, which have gusts of between 136 and 165 mph. An EF-2 tornado struck Copeville, northeast of Dallas, the National Weather Service said. At least 11 people died in the severe weather that barreled through the region, with Garland suffering the most casualties, authorities said.

tornado was spotted near Clarksdale, Miss.

tornado was spotted near Clarksdale, Miss.

In Texas alone, Fifteen people were hurt and 600 structures were damaged. The tornadoes also killed six people in Tennessee and one each in Arkansas and Alabama, bringing the three-state total to 18. As a result of the same storm system, 20 states from New Mexico to Michigan and Georgia had some type of weather watch or warning Sunday, according to the National Weather Service. Six people died in flash floods on rural Missouri roads overnight, Pulaski County Sheriff Ron Long said Sunday, as a result of the same storm system that hit Texas.

A home damaged in Ovilla, Texas, on Saturday, Dec. 26

A home damaged in Ovilla, Texas, on Saturday, Dec. 26

Three adults and two children died after their car was swept into a creek swollen by heavy rains in Marion County in southern Illinois, County Coroner Troy Cannon said. The Federal Aviation Administration issued a ground stop for Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport because of the weather. Southwest Airlines canceled 70 flights across its system Sunday, spokesman Dan Landson said. American Airlines announced the cancellation of 170 flights out of the airport Sunday. Both airlines are based in Dallas. To make matters worse, there is snow behind these storms.

Van engulphed from lightning strike

Van engulfed from lightning strike

The National Weather Service issued blizzard warnings through Monday evening in eastern New Mexico and the Texas and Oklahoma panhandles. The affected areas could receive more than eight inches of snow, the agency said, with possible snowdrifts higher than six feet. In addition to snow, icy conditions and strong winds are expected from central Oklahoma up into Kansas, making the roads dangerous for driving.

Gas station hit by a tornado in Copeville, Texas, on Saturday, Dec. 26

Gas station hit by a tornado in Copeville, Texas, on Saturday, Dec. 26

In Pope County, Arkansas, an 18-year-old woman was killed when a tree crashed onto her home. Four other people in the house survived. Northern Mississippi suffered some of the worst damage due to a tornado with an exceptionally long track, according to the National Weather Service. If confirmed to be continuous, its 150-mile-long path could be the longest for a December tornado in the Mid-South, the NWS office at Memphis, Tennessee, said.

Severe Weather

Vehicles and debris are scattered in an area near Linden, Tenn.

The Storm Prediction Center received 23 tornado reports on Wednesday from Alabama to Illinois, an unusually high number for one outbreak at this time of the year. In Austin, Arkansas, police officers pulled off a dramatic rescue after a delivery van was struck by lightning on a highway. When Officer Joshua Chaplin arrived at the scene, the inside of the vehicle was engulfed by smoke and the driver was shouting for help. Chaplin managed to break the passenger window and pull the driver to safety.

Storms in Selmer, Tenn., caused extensive damage on Dec. 23.

Storms in Selmer, Tenn., caused extensive damage on Dec. 23.

A Dent County Missouri weather warning says, “an additional 2 to 4 inches of rain can be expected today and tonight across the watch area… with the heaviest rain falling this afternoon and this evening. By the time rain ends Monday morning… storm totals are expected to range from 6 to 10 inches… with locally higher amounts in excess of 12 inches possible.

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this:
search previous next tag category expand menu location phone mail time cart zoom edit close