A line of severe weather caused havoc to much of the South on Wednesday, leaving more than 129,000 homes and businesses without power throughout Texas, Arkansas, and Missouri. A tornado watch was in force across much of Florida. East of Houston, Texas, experienced at least one tornado late Tuesday that tore off roofs, brought down power and utility poles and flipped automobiles, trucks, and even a train. No severe injuries were immediately reported.
On Wednesday, the Atlantic Coast was under a weather threat: Most at risk was the I-95 corridor running from northern Florida to southern Virginia. Wind gusts that can reach a hurricane force of 75 mph will pose the biggest concern, according to AccuWeather senior meteorologist Alex Sosnowski.
On Wednesday morning, the National Weather Service in Tallahassee reported a tornado in Belair and Four Points, Florida, that it was traveling northeast. According to National Weather Service meteorologist Roger Edwards, “a line of powerful, severe thunderstorms will proceed eastward… into and across this watch region.”
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Line of Thunderstorms to Bring Damaging Conditions to Carolinas
On Wednesday, the meteorological service warned about a line of thunderstorms expected to travel east along North Carolina and South Carolina. The weather office warned that these storms could produce a few tornadoes and isolated severe wind gusts.
The storms are advancing in front of a cold front tearing through north-central North Carolina on its way south. The weather service issued a warning, saying that while isolated damaging winds provide the most significant risk, a few tornadoes could develop if the storms intensify further.
Tornado That Hit Houston Caused ‘at Least Ef2 Damage’
The National Weather Service station in Houston reported Wednesday that the tornado that struck southeast Houston on Tuesday inflicted at least EF2 damage. According to the National Weather Service, EF2 tornado damage is defined as giant trees being snapped or uprooted, mobile homes being flattened, and roofs from frame houses being torn off. As of 11 a.m. on Wednesday, the tracking website PowerOutage.us reported that more than 16,000 people across the state were still without electricity.
‘Extremely Dangerous’ Tornado Slams Texas
A “big, extremely dangerous and potentially deadly tornado” was on the ground and moving toward Baytown, approximately 25 miles east of Houston, the weather agency warned Tuesday. In the area, street flooding was a persistent issue.
The National Weather Service announced that it dispatched a team to Southeast Texas to assess the damage and verify tornado strengths. Approximately 15 miles east of Houston, in Pasadena, which has a population of 150,000, the American Red Cross announced the creation of a shelter.
Texas Dog Shelter Blasted by Tornado
The Pasadena animal shelter experienced power, water, and phone outages; as a result, the shelter and adoption facility was closed. “Please assist! A tornado struck the Pasadena Animal Shelter today! Foster homes, etc., are urgently needed, the organization said. “Share, share, share, and if you have a garage, spare room, or anything else that can keep a dog or five, please help us!”
The shelter then announced on social media that other shelters and rescue groups had adopted most animals. As we try to move the remaining animals out to foster homes and other groups, we reassure you that they are being taken care of.
Train Blows Over in Deer Park
A train was knocked over in the Houston suburb of Deer Park due to a tornado and strong winds. Numerous city structures were severely damaged, and numerous roads had to be closed due to downed trees or electrical lines. The school system announced on Facebook that several homes and businesses had been damaged, all of its buildings were without electricity, and some neighborhoods were also affected. Wednesday’s lessons were canceled after “careful deliberation.”
The article read, “We believe it is ideal for children to remain with their parents or guardians following a natural disaster, and we hope this will give families a chance to recover from the stress of today’s events.” It further stated that the cancellation would enable employees to assess the degree of building damage.
As crews try to fix downed power lines, city officials ask residents to keep off the roads. Mayor of Deer Park Jerry Mouton Jr. expressed his surprise that no injuries were recorded. He declared, “We will take care of the property, recover, and rebuild.”
Heavy Snow in Arkansas; Schools Closed in Michigan
Much of the central United States was also experiencing snow and ice from the storm system. More than a dozen school districts in Michigan closed as snow fell there. Tuesday brought 12 inches of snow to Chimes, Arkansas, and 10 inches to Matador, a town in the Texas Panhandle. Heavy, wet snow Tuesday paralyzed parts of Arkansas. In Oklahoma, where snow totals of up to 6 inches were reported, businesses and schools were shuttered.