At least 6 dead in Texas tornado

2013-05-16 08:28
Cambrie Thornton (L) and Royal Thornton (R) sit outside their destroyed home after a tornado in April 2012 in Forney, Texas. (Tom Pennington, Getty Images/AFP)

Cambrie Thornton (L) and Royal Thornton (R) sit outside their destroyed home after a tornado in April 2012 in Forney, Texas. (Tom Pennington, Getty Images/AFP)

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Granbury — At least six people were killed on Wednesday as a spring tornado outbreak devastated parts of Texas, destroying or damaging dozens of homes and injuring dozens of people.

The worst-hit city on Wednesday was Granbury, where authorities say a deadly tornado tore through two neighbourhoods about 20:00. Sheriff Roger Deeds delivered the death toll at a midnight news conference.

"Some were found in houses. Some were found around houses," Deeds said. He also said the total could climb as crews pick through the rubble of shattered homes.

About 50 people were taken to a Granbury hospital, where 14 were admitted for treatment of injuries and two were transferred to a hospital in Fort Worth, about 55km to the northeast, Deeds said.

As many as 100 people were injured, said Matt Zavadsky, spokesperson for MedStar Mobile Healthcare. His company sent three ambulances and a medical bus from its Fort Worth base to Granbury.

Roof damage to total destruction

Deeds said officials were trying to account for 14 people, but it was not clear if they were missing or were away from the area for other reasons.

Hardest hit were two neighbourhoods in the southern end of the town of about 8 000 residents about 105km southwest of Dallas.

The same storm spawned another tornado that storm spotters told the National Weather Service was more than a kilometre wide. That twister tore through the southwestern quadrant of Cleburne, a courthouse city of about 30 000 about 40km southeast of Granbury.

There were no reports of deaths in that storm, Cleburne Mayor Scott Cain said, "but we do have the potential for some injuries". He had no estimates.

Cain had no estimate on the number of homes damaged, but he said he expected the number to soar into the dozens based on his inspection of damage ranging from roof damage to total destruction.


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