Tornado risk continues overnight along Gulf Coast after destructive storms sweep through Houston
Tornado Watch was on issue for portions of Louisiana until 1 a.m. CT on Wednesday.
DEER PARK, Tx. – Tornadoes ripped through southeast Texas and western Louisiana on Tuesday afternoon, causing damage and injuries as the storm line Tuesday night now attacks Louisiana and the Gulf Coast.
The Houston area was particularly hard-hit by the storms, which prompted dozens of tornado warnings, including a rare tornado emergency — one of the National Weather Service’s worst warnings.
It was the first tornado emergency issued in Houston since the alert type was first created in 1999.
“It was definitely a different experience,” said Houston Fire Department Captain Ryan Lee.
“For my 20 years with the Houston Fire Department, even in my decade in the rescue department, we’ve been building break-ins and things like that, but that was a different experience,” he added. “It was just widespread damage – it was impressive, the extent of the damage.”
VIEW THE DAMAGE DONE BY SEVERE STORMS THAT PULLED THROUGH THE HOUSTON AREA
Storm Chaser captures a tornado rolling down Highway 73 in Taylor Landing, Texas. (Image credit: Brad Arnold, LSM)
Tornadoes hit Texas
Extensive damage was reported in Deer Park, a Houston suburb.
Several commercial buildings were destroyed along Center Street. Some trees were found broken in half while others fell on houses and cars.
Tornado damage in the greater Houston area.
(Brian Kelly/FOX Weather)
Two locomotives were derailed near Highway 225 and Underwood Road.
“EXTENSIVE DAMAGE” REPORTED AFTER FIRST HOUSTON AREA TORNADO EMERGENCY
Texans with minor to moderate injuries were treated at the scene.
“I can remember just hearing the wind — it was just crazy,” said Shannon Moore, who worked at Deer Park, when the tornado hit.
She noticed how the tornado sounded like a freight train and rumbled like an earthquake.
Severe storms ripped through the Houston area Tuesday night. Brian Kelly shared this video after extensive damage was seen in his Houston neighborhood.
Another tornado hit the Houston suburb of Pasadena. Pasadena Police Department officers found power lines down and trucks overturned on nearby freeways.
VIEW THE DAMAGE DONE BY SEVERE STORMS THAT WERE DESERTATED THROUGH THE HOUSTON AREA
The Pasadena Animal Shelter, home to about 70 animals, also suffered storm damage from a tornado. A few dogs were injured and some of the animals are being moved to another facility, police said.
Damage to a home is seen in Pasadena, Texas after what appeared to be a tornado ripped through the area southeast of Houston on January 24, 2023.
(Rangel_WX/Twitter / FOX Weather)
“In my 25 years here, this is probably the worst damage I’ve seen,” said Pasadena Police Chief Josh Bruegger.
School districts in the tornado alert, including Katy and Spring, said their students took shelter early Tuesday. The warning was later lifted with no reported damage.
Deer Park, Texas was badly hit. Winds blew away a gas station canopy. The person who took the video said: “This gas station was totally destroyed.”
A student at James E. Taylor High School tells FOX Weather his high school in Katy, Texas was forced to run for cover.
“There was an announcement that there was a tornado drill and we were to be evacuated to a safe location,” Austin M said. “All the students were sitting in the hallways and everyone from the second floor went to the first.”
Chaser Brandon Copic checks an overturned tractor trailer outside of Houston, TX. January 24, 2023.
(Brandon Copic / FOX Weather)
Storm system penetrating Louisiana
Another tornado was confirmed later in the evening as the storm system made its way towards the Texas-Louisiana border.
Orange County in Texas, along with the communities of Acadia, Allen, Calcasieu and Beauregard in Louisiana, were hit with tornado warnings early Tuesday night.
Another tornado reportedly struck Ragla and Gillis in the township of Beauregard.
The New Orleans Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness Collin Arnold anticipates fast-moving storms and severe winds that have the potential to cause power outages in The Big Easy.
The Beauregard Township Sheriff’s Office reported that several homes and buildings are damaged and missing roofs, several roads are blocked, power lines and poles have fallen and much of the area is covered in debris.
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About 100,000 power outages were reported in Texas and over 30,000 in Louisiana as of Tuesday night.
Tornado threat Tuesday, January 24, 2023.
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Nearly 5 million people remained at risk from significant tornadoes Tuesday night.
Tornado threat for Tuesday, January 24, 2023.
All of southern Louisiana, including the greater New Orleans area, was under tornado watch until 1 a.m. CST Wednesday.
Here’s a look at the Tornado Watch released on Tuesday, January 24, 2023.
No rest for storm weary along the Gulf Coast
Severe thunderstorms are expected to spread east across southern Louisiana, the Mississippi coast, southern Alabama and the western Florida Panhandle Tuesday night.
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According to the FOX Forecast Center, these storms can damage wind gusts and multiple tornadoes, some of which could be EF-2 or stronger.
FOX Weather correspondent Nicole Valdes is in Autauga County, Alabama, where crews are continuing to clean up after a deadly tornado Thursday. A storm that broke out last week has claimed at least nine lives so far.
(Nicole Valdes / FOX Weather)
Less than two weeks ago, nine southern states were hit by a deadly storm, including an EF-3 tornado in Alabama that killed seven people as it traveled more than 76 miles from Autauga County to Chambers County.
Wednesday: The severe weather threat extends from the southeast to the southern mid-Atlantic
Strong to severe storms could hit parts of the southeastern and southern mid-Atlantic states on Wednesday, the FOX Forecast Center said.
Severe thunderstorm risk extends to parts of southeastern Alabama, northern Florida, southern and central Georgia, central and eastern Carolinas, and southeastern Virginia.
Danger of severe weather for Wednesday, January 25, 2023.
These storms will pose a threat of destructive wind gusts and some tornadoes.
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As the storm system moves away from the east coast Wednesday night, the severe weather threat will ease for the rest of the week.