Dallas Weather: Suspected tornados, straight-line winds cause damage across North Texas
DALLAS - Severe storms Thursday night caused widespread power outages and lots of damage across North Texas.
The National Weather Service confirmed an EF-1 tornado touched down in the Hopkins County town of Pickton with an estimated maximum wind gust of 110 miles per hour..
Several possible tornadoes were reported including in Weatherford and Celina, but those reports still need to be confirmed by the National Weather Service.
The damage and power outages in Weatherford, Frisco and McKinney also forced schools there to close on Friday.
Many businesses and homeowners in other parts of North Texas will be spending the next few days cleaning up.
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A tornado was spotted west of Fort Worth in the city of Weatherford.
One of FOX 4’s storm chasers driving in downtown Weatherford recorded video of debris flying around in the damaging winds.
The National Weather Service still needs to confirm that tornado.
The wind also knocked over numerous power lines and covered the roads with debris, which forced the city’s school district to cancel classes on Friday.
Weatherford ISD said some of its campuses suffered minor damage.
No major injuries were reported.
Some people in Celina in Collin County think a tornado hit the city.
FOX 4 viewer Raelena Grijalva shared video from her apartment balcony in Celina. It shows some power flashes and what looks like a debris cloud.
The storm hit on the south side of the city between 6 and 6:30 p.m. Thursday.
The storm that came through DFW may have also produced a tornado in Hopkins County about 95 miles northeast of Dallas.
About 20 homes were damaged in the community of Pickton.
Power lines were also taken down in the area and public schools were closed on Friday.
On Friday afternoon, the National Weather Service team confirmed an EF-1 tornado touched down in the area with wind gusts up to 110 miles per hour.
NWS says most of the damage was confined to roofs and trees.
RELATED: 3 school districts closed Friday due to storm damage, power outages
Straight-line winds with gusts as strong as 70 miles per hour caused a lot of damage in Denton County.
Winds at that velocity can really do a lot of damage. That’s exactly what happened at the La Azteca Meat Market on El Dorado Parkway in Little Elm, west of Frisco.
The front façade of the store was no match for the winds. It collapsed onto several parked cars in front of the business, crushing them.
There were several people inside the store at the time, including one witness who said the collapse itself was very scary.
"I was talking to my grandma on the phone and then out of nowhere I hear a big boom. Then I got scared," Diego Luna said. "It was a scary situation so I had to act quick. Got out the store."
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Luna said the fire department arrived on the scene quickly.
Their first priority was to check to see if anyone was hurt.
Thankfully, there were no injuries despite some large pieces of the façade falling from quite a distance.
There were several flattened cars and the popular store will require lots of repairs.
More than 20 people had to find a new place to stay on Thursday night after the storms damaged the Hunter Chase Apartments in Hurst.
Strong winds and rain moved through Tarrant County around 6 p.m.
Parts of the roof were torn off the apartment complex near Precinct Line Road and Highway 183.
"At first we were sitting out back and you could see it coming in. It got windy. Out of nowhere it hit and the whole building started shaking. Then we realized it’s the roof of the whole building upstairs and you hear the water dripping. It got crazy, almost picked up the truck out back," said Michael Roberts, who was inside the building as the storms came through.
Roberts said rain damaged his ceiling and walls.
Crews came to the scene on Thursday night to clean up the debris and glass.
A fencing and concrete business was also damaged in the area.
Cary Stowe was at home when he received an alert that the door to his business, Stowe Fencing and Copper on Central Park Drive had been opened.
He showed up Thursday night to see the doors and roof of his building had been blown off.
"We got out and came in and looked and saw the shop doors blown wide open and water is everywhere. The roof tore back and just everything was chaos," said Stowe.
He said all of the supplies stored inside the business have been damaged.
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The city of Hurst says that traffic signals are down at Precinct and Harwood and low power lines that are in need of repairs.
The north and southbound lanes of the intersection are closed.
As of 1:45 p.m. the city did not have a timeframe for repairs.
They are asking drivers to use extreme caution when traveling through intersections.
Strong winds caused damage to homes and businesses in Tarrant County, especially in the cities of North Richland Hills and Haltom City.
In Haltom City, the storm blew the roof off several businesses. Parts of one roof looked shredded with pieces hanging over the sides of the building.
The metal roof of a car wash near Western Center Boulevard and Beach Street also collapsed on top of a car. No one was hurt.
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North Richland Hills
In North Richland Hills, northeast of Fort Worth, the wind damaged several homes under construction.
The city said it received hundreds of calls as the storm passed, with many people reporting downed trees and debris blocking roads.
North Richland Hills is discouraging travel Friday morning because many roadways are obstructed with debris.
There will be damage assessments later in the morning to evaluate the extent of the storm’s impact.
Crews will be cleaning up damage at an Amazon warehouse in Balch Springs, southeast of Dallas.
No workers were hurt when part of the roof collapsed.
The city’s emergency coordinator said winds were gusting around 60 miles per hour when it happened.
He said not very many people were inside the building at the time.
"We’ve got a partial roof collapse inside the building. Awnings on both sides of the building are completely ripped off," said Brad Harris, the Balch Springs emergency management coordinator. "Right now this is the heaviest extent of the damage in our city."
Dallas County was under a tornado warning for part of the night.
The National Weather Service will determine if a tornado is to blame for any damage.
Rowlett Firewheel Bible Fellowship | Courtesy: Lloyd Osborn
The storms did extensive damage to a church in northeastern Dallas County.
Straight-line winds destroyed parts of the roof at Rowlett Firewheel Bible Fellowship Church.
There was damage near the foundation of the building as well.
The church has not said if the damage will impact this weekend’s services.
Pier 121 Marina
Several boats were damaged at Pier 121 on Lake Lewisville.
Multiple docks were damaged and are now unusable.
Some boats were completely flipped over, the roofs of the docks fell on others.
The marina was evacuated before the storm hit.
In Collin County, multiple businesses in Plano were damaged on Thursday night.
Strong winds blew out the windows of Atlas Spas & Swim Spas and the neighboring fitness equipment store, Johnson Fitness and Wellness in the area of Park and Preston roads.
We're told the manager of the fitness store was inside the building and able to duck behind a desk.
In Richardson, the winds took down the awning and broke glass at A to Z Printing and Signs on Main Street.
Video showed the winds flipping up the awning before crashing it back down into the store.
From security video from inside the store you can hear the loud bang of the metal from the awning against the windows.
The owner of A to Z Printing Mohammed Asmar had just returned.
"As I got to 75, I realized I might not have locked the door, as soon as I got back the awning flew up to the roof, rammed into the glass, water and wind flowing in there," Asmar said.
His first concern was securing anything that could cause damage.
"First, turned off the circuit breaker to the lights, they were on the ground. The lights were hot and the wires were soaked," Asmar said. "I moved anything on this side so it wouldn't fly into the cars, boarded it up and got home, thank God."
He says getting boards was not an easy task.
"It was really hard to hold it the wind was blowing me with it, amazing how strong the wind was," said Asmar.
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Richardson saw power outages that forced the city to temporarily asked residents to restrict their water usage.
Severe winds flipped at least three 18-wheelers on their sides in the McKinney area.
It happened on southbound Highway 75 near Laud Howell Parkway and Bloomdale Road.
The drivers were able to get out. They suffered only minor injuries.
The highway was shut down for hours as crews moved the big rigs off the road.
Cooke and Grayson Counties
Valley View | Courtesy: Carlie Peacock
People in the Cooke and Grayson counties saw lots of hail as the storms approached Thursday night. Many shared photos with FOX 4.
Viewer Carlie Peacock shared a photo of the hail outside her home in Valley View in Cooke County. That’s about 60 miles north of DFW.
Bruce Birdsong also shared two photos from in Gainesville in Cooke County.
Ryan and Chanse Molsbee took photos in Collinsville in Grayson County, about 60 miles north of the metroplex.
And, a viewer in Sherman in Grayson County said he’s never seen that much hail in the entire time he’s lived there. It almost looked like snow.