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Weather service says southeastern Williamson County hit by 2 tornadoes


Highlights

Two F2 tornadoes ran parallel near Thrall on Monday morning, the National Weather Service says.

A woman said she and her husband survived being flipped several times in their RV on County Road 420.

Two tornadoes and straight-line winds caused the damage in southeastern Williamson County early Monday that peeled roofs off homes, blew over train cars, smashed grain bins, ripped off part of a church and flipped RVs, officials said Tuesday.

One home was destroyed and 32 others were damaged, said Connie Watson, a county spokeswoman. Twelve outbuildings, such as sheds and barns, also were destroyed and 18 others were damaged, she said.

Despite the destruction, no serious injuries were reported. Officials said they did not yet have a damage estimate for the county.

The first tornado touched down at 12:25 a.m. Monday five miles southwest of Thrall with winds estimated at 118 mph, according to a preliminary report from the National Weather Service. The F2 tornado was 200 yards wide, traveled 9.4 miles and ended at 12:33 a.m. Monday four miles east-northeast of Thrall, the weather service report said.

It probably blew 12 railroad cars off their tracks east of Thrall and damaged six single-family homes, according to the report, though officials did not rule out straight-line winds causing the derailment.

The second F2 tornado started five miles southwest of Thrall at 12:28 a.m., the weather service said. It traveled 9.54 miles on a path that was nearly parallel to the first tornado, was 100 yards wide, had winds estimated at 112 mph and ended at 12:31 a.m. one mile southeast of Thrall, the report said.

It caused significant damage by ripping three grain bins from their foundations and damaged an extension to the Christ Lutheran Church, where the walls had been bolted to the foundation, according to the report.

Tammie Adams said she and her husband, David, were in their RV early Monday on County Road 420 near Thrall when it tumbled over three times during one of the tornadoes. She suffered a broken toe and a puncture wound that required a few stitches, and her husband’s shoulder was dislocated, she said.

Adams said she received a tornado alert on her cellphone about 12:30 a.m. Monday and asked her husband to get their dogs, which were in a nearby office. “He opened the door and said, ‘It’s not even raining,’ ” she said. As soon as her husband closed the RV door, “it felt like someone picked us up and started violently shaking us,” she said.

The recreational vehicle continued to flip until it hit a neighbor’s storage container, Adams said. By that time, she said, a dresser had fallen forward and pinned her husband underneath the bed. She said she held the bed off of him until emergency workers rescued him.

The dogs turned out to be safe, she said.

The severe storms that pushed through parts of Central Texas late Sunday and early Monday also produced four tornadoes that touched down in San Antonio, damaging nearly 120 homes. Mayor Ivy Taylor on Tuesday issued a disaster declaration for the city and asked Gov. Greg Abbott for state assistance.



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