By Michael Hetrick
EAST TEXAS (KLTV) - A powerful storm system is responsible for quite a bit of wind damage across East Texas, as strong to severe thunderstorms developed Friday evening and early Saturday morning.
The entire KLTV viewing area was under a "moderate risk" of severe weather Friday and into early Saturday morning. This means that the possibility of damaging winds, hail, heavy rain and isolated tornadoes was possible. We had two rounds of storms. The first were Friday evening, the second between 1AM and 4AM Saturday morning.
So far, four tornadoes has been officially confirmed by the National Weather Service. The first near Queen City, in Cass County, Friday evening. A storm survey confirmed that an EF0 tornado uprooted a large tree, and peeled off a 20-foot section of roofing on HWY 59. Some of that tin wrapped around a nearby power pole.
The second tornado was early Saturday morning near Mabank, in Kaufman County. It was a brief EF1, with winds of up to 90MPH. However, lots of wind damage was reported as the storms moved through. Wind gusts of 60 to 70 MPH were recorded in locations, with Corsicana receiving an 88 MPH wind gust.
The third and forth reported tornadoes occured about 5 miles northeast of Quitman and 3 miles east of Winnsboro, respectively in Wood County. Both were rated EF0, with several trees uprooted along County Road 4919, 4925 and 4930. Also, a metal hay barn was destroyed along HWY 11. Portions of the rook and walls of the barn were blown 100 yards away from their source.
While some parts of East Texas did catch a break from the severe weather, as these storms moved into Arkansas, Louisiana and Mississippi more reports of damage occurred. The Storm Prediction Center placed portions of Mississippi, Alabama, Tennesse and Kentucky under a rare "high risk" for severe weather Saturday. As many as 40 reports of tornado damage have already been reported to the National Weather Service, extending from Eastern Louisiana to Western Alabama to as far north as Missouri.
For a look at the storm damage reports across East Texas, click here.