NWS confirms EF1 tornado struck Sabine Co. - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

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NWS confirms EF1 tornado struck Sabine Co.

SABINE COUNTY, TX (KTRE) -

A death and damage to dozens of structures was the result of a tornado which struck Sabine County Thursday afternoon.

Bill Parker, the warning coordination meteorologist with the National Weather Service was at the scene Friday and determined a tornado was responsible for the damage. It is classified as an EF1, which means wind speeds were between 86 and 110 mph.

Louise Stringer, 74, died from head injuries she sustained after a tree fell into her mobile home.

The tornado was the first to claim a life in Texas since 2007.

According to the National Weather Service, the tornado's path was 4.5 miles long and 150 yards wide at its widest point. The twister touched down at approximately 1:10 p.m. and lifted at approximately 1:19 p.m. Thursday.

Parker identified the storm damage with a special app. that allows him to collect photos and give brief explanations regarding the extent of the damage. This special program is then able to estimate the wind speeds based on that data.

The biggest indicator with this tornado was not the actual structural damage. Parker pointed out tree damaged tree and said, "It takes more wind to destroy these trees this way than it would to destroy that outbuilding. So right now, our strongest damage indicator is the trees."

One of the hardest-hit areas in Sabine County was off FM Road 1. Numerous large trees were completely toppled or uprooted. One tree was blown a good 25 to 30 yards, and it fell onto a home.

"The best damage indicator is to look at the trees again," Parker said. "Notice how these trees are laid towards the west, these trees are laid toward the east. I have a tree over there that's laid toward the northwest. The trees are laid in different directions. The circular winds cause the trees to go in different directions."

Copyright 2013 KTRE. All rights reserved.

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