No tornado warnings were issued in Dallas-Fort Worth, but many North Texans were awakened by storm sirens as a strong line of thunderstorms moved through Dallas-Fort Worth early Wednesday.
Grand Prairie, among several cities that activated sirens, set off the warnings to alert residents about high winds. The city also can activate the sirens in other weather emergencies, including when large hail is falling, but no hail was reported Wednesday morning.
Our ability to respond to emergencies is limited. This is a real threat for us. If that levee is breached, the water is trapped in town and well see flooding like we havent seen since 1965 and theres no where for the water to go, Norfolk Public Safety Director Shane Weidner said.
As the storm moved through the area, it produced gusts of up to 109 mph in Grand Prairie, 78 mph at DFW International Airport, 71 mph in Addison and 58 in McKinney, according to the National Weather Service.
The wind gusts recorded at DFW Airport were the highest measured by the weather services observation system since it was installed at the airport in 1995, according to meteorologist Monique Sellers.
Tree removal professional Greg Dobbs, 49, said North Oak Cliff was among the most heavily affected areas in Dallas. His company, Oak Cliff-based J.D.s Tree Service, received about 40 calls related to the storm between 6 a.m. and early afternoon Wednesday.
I think a straight-line wind came through and tore down a lot of signs and massive trees, he said. We lost a lot of old-growth trees today, which is really sad.
John Gimber, 31, was one of Dobbs clients. A neighbors gargantuan 80-year-old oak fell onto Gimbers home before dawn Wednesday, leaving him with holes in his roof and a destroyed fence.
Dobbs men took the tree down Wednesday afternoon. The tree had fallen on the back corner of Gimbers home, just above his bed. Gimber said he and his wife thought the house had been struck by lightning when the tree fell about 4:30 a.m.
The whole house shook, then water started dripping into the bedroom from the roof, Gimber said. I went into the attic and saw the tree poking through the roof. It saved our lives that it didnt fall through.
Grand Prairies 109-mph wind speed was recorded at the city airports air traffic control tower, city spokeswoman Cami McKillop said.
PINE BELT (WDAM) – The chance for severe weather across parts of the Pine Belt continues to diminish, but isnt zero. The Storm Prediction Center continues to show a Marginal Risk for severe storms in our area for Thursday afternoon and evening. That is a one-out-of-five on the one-to-five scale where five is the highest risk for severe weather.
Storms knock out power, damaging winds to houses, buildings in North Texas
Oncor reported at least 125,000 outages during the storm, and the weather service also received reports of downed power lines and poles.
Plan your day with an hour-by-hour forecast tailored for home, work or anywhere on-the-go. Our WDAM First Alert Weather app can tell you if a storm near you has hail, strong winds or rotation.
March 13, 1:30 PM Update
About 67 planes were damaged along with 13 buildings at Grand Prairie Municipal Airport, McKillop said. No injuries were reported.
Also in Grand Prairie, southbound lanes of the Bush Turnpike near Mayfield Road were closed after high winds knocked over an 18-wheeler.
At DFW Airport, where gusts were recorded up to 78 mph, jet bridges at terminals B and D were damaged, spokeswoman Cynthia Vega said. Flight delays and cancellations were possible as a result.
The WDAM First Alert Weather App is free in the Android and Apple app stores, part of the WDAM First Alert commitment to help keep you safe.
“Were urging everyone — regardless of the terminal — to check flight statuses before coming out to the airport,” Vega said.
Thunderstorms swept Grand Prairie, Texas, early Wednesday morning, with wind gusts over 80 mph ravaging the landscape, knocking out power for thousands and even flipping over small planes at a local airport.
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Damage also had been reported at some of the airports parking lots, but she said garages had not been damaged.
Between DFW and Love Field airports, more than 100 flights had been delayed throughout the day and at least 12 were canceled, according to FlightAware.
We are assessing the damage from this morning's severe weather and working quickly to make repairs. Please check with your airline for information on flight delays or cancellations.
Strong storms continue in East Texas
Video captured by Marcus Hawthorne showed sheets of metal and debris slamming into vehicles parked outside the building.
Thursday is a First Alert Weather Day for possibility of severe storms, flooding rain
“I was sitting in my truck trying to record the heavy rain in the wind, when all of a sudden came a loud crashing noise of the roofing hitting the ground,” Hawthorne told KXAS-TV (NBC5).
Local resident Elsa Panther, who lives near the Grand Prairie air hub, told NBC DFW that she was terrified as the winds ripped off the chimney of her home.
1 injured in Texas storms, small airplanes flip at airport
In Carrollton, police announced two storm-related road problems. The 1600 block of Valwood Parkway was down to one lane because a tree fell in the roadway, and eastbound Keller Springs Road between Josey Lane and Carmel Drive also was reduced to one lane because of fallen power lines.
Local reporters have taken to Twitter to share updates, with some posting that as many as 40 planes were damaged in the storm.
There were no reports of tornadoes early Wednesday, but storms produced wind speeds equivalent to an EF-0 tornado, which the weather service identifies by wind gusts between 65 and 85 mph, and an EF-1 tornado, characterized by winds up to 110 mph.
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The National Weather Service office in Fort Worth decided not to survey areas impacted by Wednesdays storms for tornado damage. The office determined damage from the storms was caused by straight-line winds, not tornadoes, according to Sellers.
By 5:30 a.m., the front line of the storm, which produced the strongest winds, had moved through most of Dallas-Fort Worth.
Strong to severe storms possible on Thursday
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