Deadly Outbreak of Tornadoes Strikes North Texas

Deadly Outbreak of Tornadoes Strikes North Texas

Shannon Turgeon, News Editor

An outbreak of 13 tornadoes hit North Texas on the night of May 15. According to the Associated Press, at least six people were killed and dozens more were injured.

The National Weather Service stated that the damage indicated that EF4 tornadoes had touched down in the area. EF4 is the second worst classification on a scale of zero to five.

In the town of Granbury, Texas, which is 30 miles southwest of Fort Worth, rescuers were frantically searching for seven missing people. Hood County Sheriff Rodger Deeds stated that the search for survivors was starting to wind down, but the search and rescue operations were “still working to identify people.” Deeds added that “We’re going to keep on looking. We’re not going to give up until ever piece of debris is turned over.”

The fatalities consisted of two men and four women, according to CNN. It is unclear whether the death toll will rise.

The deaths occured in a Habitat for Humanity neighborhood called Ranchos Brazos. This subdivision was reportedly hit the hardest by the tornadoes.

Habitat for Humanity workers spent years building homes in Ranchos Brazos that were destroyed in seconds during the twisters. The Hood County Commissioner, Steve Berry, said that he was unable to tell one street from another in the neighborhood due to the destruction. At least a dozen homes are said to be unsalvageable. “I tell you, it just breaks my heart,” Granbury Habitat for Humanity volunteer Elsie Tallant told the Pittsburgh Tribune Review.

Multiple tornadoes also struck in the town of Cleburne, which is 30 miles east of Granbury. At least twelve homes lost their entire roofs and many more buildings suffered damage.

Resident Robert Barnett told CNN affiliate WFAA that “I’ve seen tornadoes like this before-I’ve chased them-but I’ve never seen one like this. It freaked me out.” Another civilian, Darren Vasquez, said that he thought the storm had passed when it actually hadn’t. “I went back outside and saw stuff flying by and said, ‘It’s here! Let’s go!'” Vasquez also told WFAA that he lost part of the roof on his home and a ceiling collapsed.

There was also damage in Ellis County. In the city of Ennis, several buildings in the historic district were harmed, according to city manager Steve Howerton. Residents reportedly experienced extreme wind and rain in addition to a suspected tornado.

B.B. French, who lived in Ellis County, told CNN via a telephone interview that her house escaped unscathed.

“It really is just luck,” she said.