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1 killed in Texas as new storms move through, just days after fatal Memorial Day Weekend weather

North Texas is experiencing widespread power outages as strong storms continue to pummel parts of the state.
Severe Weather Texas
Posted at 7:24 AM, May 28, 2024

Storms in Texas killed one person and caused power outages on Tuesday when they brought strong winds and baseball-sized hail to parts of the state.

The Montgomery County Sheriff's Office said a 16-year-old boy died near Houston when a partially constructed building collapsed during the storm. Officials said the victim was an employee of the construction company.

Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins said Tuesday's power outages were expected to last for days in places. He declared a state of emergency and said some businesses, like nursing homes, were now depending on generator power for the short term.

Widespread power outages were reported in the region, which includes Dallas and Fort Worth, where an oppressive, early-season heat wave added to the misery. Nearly 800,000 customers lacked electricity Tuesday, including close to 390,000 in Dallas County, according to PowerOutage.us.

The Tuesday storms in Texas come as parts of the state are still assessing damage and casualties from severe weather that moved through ahead of Memorial Day Weekend. Seven deaths were reported in Cook County, Texas, near the Oklahoma border, including two children, ages 5 and 2.

A tornado in Cook County Saturday left behind widespread destruction, with homes completely obliterated. Texas Gov. Greg Abbott added several more counties to an April disaster declaration, which was also the result of severe storms and flooding.

The Memorial Day weekend storms killed at least 23 people and injured hundreds more across Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Missouri and Kentucky.

Seven people were killed in Cooke County, Texas, from a tornado that tore through a mobile home park Saturday, officials said, and eight deaths were reported across Arkansas.

Two people died in Mayes County, Oklahoma, east of Tulsa, authorities said. The injured included guests at an outdoor wedding. A Missouri man died Sunday after a tree limb fell onto his tent as he was camping.

Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear said at a news conference Monday that five people had died in his state.

A possible tornado damaged a high school and a half-dozen homes in Pennsylvania on Monday night. No injuries were reported, but school was canceled in Mahanoy City, Pennsylvania, said David Truskowsky, spokesperson for the city’s fire department.

A person stands near debris cause by tornado damage in Mayfield, Ky., on Saturday, Dec. 11, 2021.

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Are you prepared for a natural disaster? Do these things now

John Matarese
10:42 AM, Apr 05, 2024

It has been a grim month of tornadoes and severe weather in the nation’s midsection.

Tornadoes in Iowa last week left at least five people dead and dozens injured. Storms killed eight people in Houston this month. April had the second-highest number of tornadoes on record in the country. The storms come as climate change contributes in general to the severity of storms around the world.

Late May is the peak of tornado season, but the recent storms have been exceptionally violent, producing very strong tornadoes, said Victor Gensini, a meteorology professor at Northern Illinois University.

“Over the weekend, we’ve had a lot of hot and humid air, a lot of gasoline, a lot of fuel for these storms. And we’ve had a really strong jet stream as well. That jet stream has been aiding in providing the wind shear necessary for these types of tornadoes,” Gensini said.

Harold Brooks, a senior scientist at the National Severe Storms Laboratory in Norman, Oklahoma, said a persistent pattern of warm, moist air is to blame for the string of tornadoes over the past two months.

That air is at the northern edge of a heat dome bringing temperatures typically seen at the height of summer to late May.

The heat index — a combination of air temperature and humidity to indicate how the heat feels to the human body — neared triple digits in parts of south Texas on Monday. Extreme heat was also forecast for San Antonio and Dallas.

In Florida, Melbourne and Ft. Pierce set new daily record highs Monday. Both hit 98 degrees. Miami set a record high of 96 on Sunday.