Thursday, May 16, 2013


UPDATE, MAY 16 - Ten tornadoes smashed into the Dallas-Fort Worth area last night as powerful storms swept across northern Texas. At least six people are now known to have died. A number are still missing, probably buried under crushed houses. More than 100 were injured and hundreds more are homeless today. Especially hard-hit were the communities of Granbury, Cleburne and Millsap, each struck by separate tornadoes. The National Weather Service says a tornado in the small town of Granbury was an EF-4 with wind speeds over 200 mph.

Helping Neighbors: Another AP story reports that a large nonprofit group, Mission Granbury, Inc., is organizing donations to help those in need. Mission Granbury will work with local churches. You can donate supplies or money by calling Mission Granbury at 817-579-6866. The American Red Cross is operating shelters at two churches in Granbury.  BELOW: Video of an aerial view of the tornado damage in Cleburne, TX. Earlier reports follow this video.

ADVISORY: MUTE VOLUME on video below (loud wind!)

ADVISORY: MUTE VOLUME on video above (loud wind!)
May 15, 2013 - Powerful storms are spawning tornadoes in northern Texas tonight.  Hail as large as grapefruit was driven by high winds. "Mass casualties" are being reported. CNN reports at least 100 injuries. On the Hood County Sheriff radio frequency, sheriff's deputies and other first responders called out reports of bodies and injured people found among "flattened" houses.

"Dozens of ambulances and other emergency responders had mobilized, with agencies from many cities standing by to help," says a late report from Dallas Morning News. Firefighters and police officers were going home to home in search of casualties. Many of the injured were being treated at Lake Granbury Medical Center, McKethan said. Medstar officials said its crews had taken 17 people to Fort Worth hospitals. Granbury’s hard-hit Rancho Brazos subdivision was evacuated, and natural gas was leaking there, officials said. About an hour after Granbury was hit, a mile-wide tornado was reported on the ground in the Cleburne area in Johnson County."

Granbury, TX (pop. 8,000) seems especially hard hit, with at least one confirmed tornado causing damage and injuring a number of people. Granbury is about 40 miles southwest of Fort Worth. (Map)

Hood County Sheriff units reported  downed power lines ("hot wires") and roads blocked with debris. CNN reports that Granbury city officials "were sending school buses to affected neighborhoods to help with evacuations. Granbury is about 40 miles southwest of Fort Worth."

"Multiple fatalities" were reported by the Hood County sheriff’s office said there were "multiple injuries" in the wake of the storm, according to KTLA.

School buses and sheriff's deputies are taking injured people to VFW posts and school cafeterias, which are being used tonight as makeshift triage units.

Houses and building have been flattened. It is too early to know the number of people injured and structures damaged. Granbury authorities say that the hardest hit area was the Rancho Brazos subdivision and neighboring areas along Lake Granbury, according to NBC5 in Dallas Fort Worth.
Updates as they were breaking on May 15:

KHOU Houston:
9:33p Tornado sirens are sounding in Granbury, in Hood County, where damage has already been reported.

9:32p A new tornado warning is issued for Dallas County until 10:15 p.m., with circulation reported just south of Cockrell Hill. Take shelter if you are in the vicinity of this storm, which is heading to the northeast at 15 mph. - Chief Meteorologist Pete Delkus

9:30p Heavy storm damage is reported at a subdivision in the vicinity of Chaucer Drive and Browning Lane, about 2.7 miles southwest of downtown Cleburne [map]. - Chief Meteorologist Pete Delkus  More at KHOU...

Houston Chronicle:
The [Granbury] tornado was part of a system of severe thunderstorms that spawned several tornadoes across North Texas, dropping large hail in some areas. The extent of the damage and injuries was not immediately clear. However, police reported the hardest hit area was the Rancho Brazos subdivision [map] and adjoining areas along Lake Granbury.

Another tornado hit the small town of Millsap [map] about 40 miles west of Fort Worth. Parker County Judge Mark Kelley said roof damage was reported to several houses and a barn was destroyed, but no injuries were reported.


  • Multiple fatalities, 100 injuries in severe Texas storm CNN
  • Texas severe weather, May 15, 2013 Breaking News
  • Tornadoes spotted near Granbury, Decatur Star-Telegram
  • Mission Granbury Organizing Tornado Donations NBC Dallas-Fort Worth