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Dallas Wakes Up To a Tornado Threat

As the storms roll out of the area, cities like Grapevine and Plano are surveying the damage.
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The skies downtown got progressively darker as storms rolled in Tuesday morning. Bethany Erickson

Update, 12:50 p.m.: The storms passed from the Dallas-Fort Worth metro area, moving east. Dallas avoided the worst of it, but tornadoes did appear to touch down in Tarrant, Denton, Parker, and Erath counties.

In River Oaks, a small pocket between downtown Fort Worth and Lake Worth, video captured what appeared to be a spiral touching down in the distance. Another video captured what appears to be a tornado damaging homes near Decatur. Another funnel cloud appeared to reach land in Grapevine near State Highway 114 and Ira E. Woods Avenue, which damaged power lines, a gas station, and an 18 wheeler.

A Grapevine police captain told Fox 4 that a tornado touched down in the Sam’s parking lot. Earlier in the morning, tornadoes were observed on radar in Parker County and between Eastland and Erath counties. The National Weather Service will need to confirm the total. No word yet on whether there were any victims or how many structures were damaged.

But the storm has now moved out of North Texas and all the NWS warnings and watches have expired.


Original story: Dallas County faces a tornado watch at least 11 a.m. on Tuesday, but it looks like the worst of the storm has moved east. Western Collin County was under a tornado warning through 9:45 a.m., and a “severe thunderstorm capable of producing a tornado” was identified near The Colony a little after 9:12 a.m. It was moving northeast at 40 miles per hour. (A watch signals the possibility of a tornado while a warning comes after one is confirmed.)

The National Weather Service issued a flurry of tornado watches for most of North Texas before the sun rose as a long band of severe storms began marching from the west. Tarrant, Denton, and Collin counties were soon issued tornado warnings; Dallas never got above a watch. The storm reached Plano and Frisco at 9:20 a.m., McKinney five minutes later, Allen and Prosper at 9:30 a.m., and Princeton and Melissa around 9:45 a.m.

Spotters caught the aftermath of what appears to be a tornado in Decatur, northwest of Fort Worth, and the storm that generated it was charging toward neighboring cities Ponder, Krum, and Sanger. A Fox 4 viewer shot an image of a downed power pole off State Highway 114 in Grapevine, near the Baylor Scott & White Medical Center there.

The severe thunderstorm warning expired in Dallas County until at 10 a.m. with the watch going another hour for the entire region. There was a possibility of winds up to 60 miles per hour and quarter-size hail. A severe weather advisory has been issued for both Love Field and DFW International Airport, and the TSA advises flyers to check the status of their flights before traveling. About 23,000 Oncor customers lost power across North Texas.

The National Weather Service’s radar shows a long line of severe storms moving east that reached Dallas around 9 a.m. It’s the southern tip of an enormous band of storms that stretches all the way to Minnesota and brings a tornado risk to most of the southern United States.

The line of storms should move out of the metro area by 11 a.m., with the sun coming out later in the afternoon. The front settles in overnight, dropping lows into the 30s and highs in the 50s for the rest of the week.

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Matt Goodman

Matt Goodman

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Matt Goodman is the online editorial director for D Magazine. He's written about a surgeon who killed, a man who…

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