First Alert Forecast: The Midlands could see strong to severe storms Sunday

Elias Hubbard
April 14, 2019

Widespread severe thunderstorms have pounded areas to our West Saturday night. No injuries were reported there, but officials said several businesses and vehicles were damaged. Trees were down throughout the hilly city on a bluff overlooking the Mississippi.

The batch of severe storms that moved through overnight into early Sunday morning developed out ahead of an approaching cold front.

Monroe County Coroner Alan Gurley says 95-year-old Roy Ratliff died late Saturday when a tornado toppled a tree onto Ratliff's home in the town of Hamilton. A tornado was reported in the area at the time. No fatalities were reported.

The roof of a hotel in New Albany, Mississippi, was damaged, although the cause was unclear.

The tornado downed trees near the Mississippi State University campus. Damage from a possible tornado was also reported on Saturday afternoon in Alto, Texas. Trees were down and at least some minor structural damage was reported in residential areas east of the campus. A mobile home community was damaged, but no injuries are being reported.

In East Texas, the Angelina County Sheriff's Office said an 8-year-old and a 3-year-old died when strong winds toppled a tree onto the back of their family's auto in Lufkin while it was in motion. Very heavy rain - capable of producing pockets of flash flooding, damaging wind gusts, hail, and even an isolated, short-lived tornado can not be ruled out.

Risk of severe thunderstorms Sunday, according to the National Weather Service Storm Prediction Center. Multiple structures in Franklin, Texas were destroyed by a tornado on Saturday, as severe weather swept through eastern Texas toward Arkansas, Louisiana and Mississippi. Franklin is about 125 miles (200 kilometres) south of Dallas.

The National Weather Service Storm Prediction Center is cautioning that, "Strong tornadoes are possible today into tonight from east Texas into MS, with the greatest threat expected between 2PM-8PM CDT".

Clay said 19 people were taken to hospitals for treatment, including two in critical condition.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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