A tornado southwest of San Antonio caused considerable damage and flooding across the region. The flooding was caused by a line of thunderstorms that shadowed the fierce cone of destruction.
The natural disaster touched down late Monday about 25 miles southwest of San Antonio and moved toward the city. Most of the damage was to rural homes north of the towns of Natalia and Lytle, officials said.
The following YouTube video shows a Large cone tornado in Lytle, TX on March 19, 2012:
“We have multiple homes damaged, several homes were taken by this tornado,” Roy Bermudez, a deputy with the Medina County Sheriff’s Office southwest of San Antonio, told Reuters Tuesday morning. Several people suffered injuries but a full assessment of the damage would be unavailable until after daylight.
More injuries of fatalities could have resulted but dozens of people took refuge in a community center set up in the town of Somerset, southwest of San Antonio.
The National Weather Service had issued flash flood warnings for parts of Texas, Oklahoma and Louisiana. The flooding and debris caused dozens of streets to be closed, making it harder for people to check on their loved ones.
Weather radar images showed a slow-moving band of storms stretching from near the Texas-Mexico border through eastern Oklahoma and into southeastern Kansas. Meteorologists with the weather service said the line would continue to move eastward through the morning.
Power outages were reported across the area; 23,000 homes were without power early Tuesday.
Other damage included two house fires that may have been caused by lightning strikes.
One truck driver had a particularly terrifying experience; the man was trapped inside his vehicle after a live power line was blown onto his truck by the strong winds. The San Antonion Fire Department rescued the man in the knick of time.
The flooding rains are a half blessing for south and central Texas. The region has been suffering from a drought that began early in 2011. It developed into the state’s worst one-year drought ever.
Hopefully this disaster will help crops grow to fruition later this year.