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Storms in Texas, Oklahoma and Arkansas leave at least 14 dead

Jake Bleiberg, Bloomberg News on

Published in News & Features

Storms left at least 14 people dead, many more injured and tens of thousands without power Sunday after ripping through parts of Texas, Oklahoma and Arkansas.

Seven people, including two children, were killed after a reported tornado tore through North Texas, Cooke County Sheriff Ray Sappington told news outlets.

The sheriff didn’t specify where the dead were found but said rescue workers have been scouring a community of mobile homes north of Dallas. Around the region, the storms shattered buildings, downed electrical lines and wrecked vehicles.

“It’s just a trail of debris left. The devastation is pretty severe,” Sappington told the Associated Press. He said the children killed were two and five years old.

Authorities in Arkansas and Oklahoma told the AP that at least seven people were killed and more injured across the states. Two people in Oklahoma and five in Arkansas were reported dead, local officials told the news service, adding that emergency response efforts were ongoing.

A tornado was spotted in the area near Valley View, Texas, about 60 miles northeast of downtown Dallas on Saturday night, according to the National Weather Service in Fort Worth. Forecasters had warned earlier that severe thunderstorms, tornadoes and hail the size of golf balls were likely to pummel the region near the Texas-Oklahoma line.

 

The storms also hit a travel center along an interstate highway where authorities said travelers had taken shelter. Television news footage showed police cruisers and ambulances gathered near a gas station reduced to piles of twisted metal. Cars and trucks could be seen amid the debris with their windows blown out.

The destructive weather also knocked out power to tens of thousands of people. More than 51,000 people were without power in Texas as of mid-afternoon Sunday, along with 86,000 more in Arkansas and at least 5,000 in Oklahoma, according to the tracking website poweroutage.us.

The outages came as temperatures in parts of the region approached 100F degrees Sunday. High temperatures were forecast to persist Monday.

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