National Weather Service confirms tornado moved through Hallsville area
LONGVIEW, TX (KLTV) - The National Weather Service confirmed that a tornado moved through the Hallsville area Thursday night.
The tornado, which has been rated as an EF-1, touched down off Noonday Road, west of FM 450. NWS said the rating could go up as crews continue to survey. EF1 means wind speeds reach anywhere from 86–110 miles per hour.
Friday morning, NWS crews were investigating four reported tornadoes in the East Texas area and said that three "tornadic couplets" had been confirmed. According to a NWS hydrologist, a tornadic couplet is when Doppler radar indicates that a storm is producing a tornado.
The NWS is sorting through data to confirm if the storms touched down Thursday night.
Tornadoes were reported in Longview, west of Henderson, along the Smith/Cherokee county line in northwestern Rusk County and along the Smith/Cherokee line in the Mixon area.
NWS crews are sending a team out to assess the damage.
According to Longview Fire Marshal Johnny Zackary, at least 31 structures were damaged in the Longview area Thursday night. Severe storms also closed roads in multiple cities. Longview police said several roads are still closed because of major storm damage in one neighborhood.
Residents of a Longview nursing home were also evacuated overnight after the building received extensive damage from strong storms. Eden Select Specialties owns the property on Tryon Road. According to the Longview Fire Department, a portion of the roof was torn away. Longview Fire Marshal Johnny Zackary says all 75 patients were evacuated.
Storms also closed a road in Smith County.
The Longview/Tyler chapter of the American Red Cross is offering help to those affected by Thursday night's bad weather. To find out more about receiving assistance, click here.
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