Severe weather that spawned Dallas tornado moves east, 1 killed by falling tree in Arkansas

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Courtesy of FOX

DALLAS, Tx. (FOX) — A line of potent thunderstorms responsible for the powerful tornado that tore through parts of Dallas late Sunday has moved east, blasting the region with strong winds and leaving at least one person dead after a tree fell on an Arkansas home early Monday.

The National Weather Service’s Weather Prediction Center said numerous showers and thunderstorms were expected to continue throughout the day along the Mississippi River Valley southward to the Gulf Coast ahead of a cold front.

“There will be enough instability ahead of the front across parts of the Deep South to support the development of some strong to severe thunderstorms on Monday, and there may be additional strong storms over the Southeast U.S. on Tuesday,” the NWS said.

The strong to severe thunderstorm threat from the Gulf Coast to the Ohio Valley brings the threat of large hail, damaging winds, heavy rain, and possible tornadoes, according to Fox News Senior Meteorologist Janice Dean.

“We had a tornado yesterday in Dallas, Texas it came overnight, last night. We have the threat for severe weather today, again,” Dean said on “Fox & Friends.” “Just be aware we could see the potential for strong to severe thunderstorms, know what to do if there is a watch or warning.”

In Arkansas, one person was killed just after midnight after a tree fell on a home in Rogers, located about 150 miles northwest of Little Rock, according to an NWS report.

Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson also confirmed the death on Twitter, saying “significant storm damage” was reported in the northwest part of the state.

The storms, which struck the Dallas area late Sunday, moved through Arkansas in the early morning hours on Monday, triggering several tornado warnings while damage was also reported in the northeast corner of the state. Tornado warnings were in effect Monday morning in far eastern Arkansas near the Mississippi River as the storm system moved to the east.

Damage was also reported in Oklahoma and Missouri, and tens of thousands of customers in the Memphis area were without power after the storms moved through, FOX13 reported.

In Dallas, many people spent Monday assessing the damage after the tornado struck the northern part of the city.

The twister touched down around 9 p.m. near Love Field Airport in North Dallas before moving northeast through the city, knocking out power for thousands. The tornado’s path took it through the Walnut Lane area of Dallas before it moved through sections of Garland, Richardson, Rockwall and Sachse.

Courtesy of FOX – This Oct. 20, 2019 image made from video by Twitter user @AthenaRising shows the tornado in Rockwall, Texas. (@AthenaRising via AP)

In the Royal Lane area, Jeff Nguyen told FOX4 his children were upstairs when tornado sirens began blaring. Nguyen said his wife was trying to make it up the stairs when the tornado began to blow their roof off and “threw her back down the stairs.”

“I kind of pushed her down and got past her and got upstairs. My son was up in his bed with the covers over him. The window blew out and flew into the side of his bed,” he told FOX4. “If he didn’t have a bunk bed I don’t know where it would have landed on him. But that probably saved him.”

Aerial footage from FOX4 showed the extent of the damage throughout the region, including several homes with their roofs ripped off.

The manager told FOX4 he sent the last few employees home and closed up about 30 minutes before the tornado caused part of the building to collapse.

Dallas Fire Rescue’s Station 41 on Royal Lane near the Dallas North Tollway was almost completely destroyed by the twister. Photos released by the department showed the roof is gone and the walls are damaged, but officials said that no firefighters were hurt.

There were no reports of fatalities or serious injuries early Monday, according to a release from the city of Dallas, but Fire-Rescue spokesman Jason Evans told the Associated Press that three people were hospitalized for evaluation of non-life-threatening injuries.

Search teams were set to begin a second round of efforts at daylight, according to Evans, who told the AP that crews have responded to “everything from power lines down to fallen trees to people being injured inside of their homes by broken glass.”

The storm’s fury was captured on social media, with one video showing debris flying around.

Damage within Dallas is limited to an area bordered by Royal Lane to the north and Northwest Highway to the south, as well as Harry Hines Boulevard to the west and U.S. Highway 75 to the east – essentially, northwest Dallas, according to Evans.

Video of the twister showed electrical flashes as it moved northeast, bringing down power lines.

Nearly 140,000 electric customers were without power in Texas as of 4 a.m. Monday, according to Oncor’s online outage map. The electric utility said storms across East Texas had caused significant damage to power lines.

Mayor Eric Johnson said the city of Dallas opened the Bachman Recreation Center with the help of the Red Cross. The shelter will be open for anyone who was displaced by the storm, remains without power or needs help. The Red Cross is assessing if additional shelters need to be opened.

Citing extensive damage to campuses, the Dallas Independent School District canceled Monday classes at six schools.

At a news conference on Monday, Johnson said that Dallas residents should consider themselves lucky that no one was killed.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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