Whitehouse Cleans Up After Tornado Hits - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

3/5/04 - Whitehouse

Whitehouse Cleans Up After Tornado Hits

The City of Whitehouse in southwest Smith County is dealing with the aftermath of an F-1 tornado that hit. Don Caldwell has his work cut out for him. Several trees on his property on County Road 129 were literally ripped from the ground. He claims to have seen a tornado come close, but not touch down. Across the street, John Harris had two horses stabled inside a barn which was destroyed at the R-Bar-H Ranch. Both  horsese escaped with barely a scratch.

"We're extremely lucky that the horses weren't anymore injured," said Harris, "and [the barn] can be fixed."

Glenn Bankhead spent the morning trying to get power restored. His is the only home in the Quail Run Neighborhood still left without power, thanks to his trampoline.

"Wind and all of the rain came up out of nowhere," said Bankhead, "picked up the trampoline from behind me right in the backyard, threw it up and ripped the power mast right out of my house."

Road crews will need several days to clean away all of the debris from trees and branches. The same goes for Bill Hunt, who began walking around his property today, wondering how his neighbor's shed ended up several hundred feet away in his yard.

"The wind acted like it wanted to come in the house," said Hunt.  "That's how bad it sounded. Whether it was a tornado or straight line [winds], I couldn't say for sure."

The National Weather Service Meteorologist came over from Shreveport to assess the damage and classify the storm. It was learned last this evening, it was a tornado that came down.

"It began to look like there could be a definite path through, at least through here," said Harrison.

The Red Cross had a Disaster Relief Team in the Whitehouse area today, offering assistance. They said fortunately, there was little need for their help.

Kevin Berns reporting  kberns@kltv.com 

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