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Heavy Rainfall and Flash Flood Threats Shift From Southern Plains to Lower Mississippi Valley; Elevated to Critical Fire Concerns Out West

Heavy to excessive rainfall with flash flood concerns will shift from the southern Plains into the Lower Mississippi Valley. Elevated to Critical Fire weather threats will linger through the weekend across the Great Basin and central Rockies. Finally, Major to Record river flooding will continue in portions of the Midwest and across parts of North and South Carolina this weekend. Read More >

Overview
A strong springtime storm system brought severe weather to the Four State Region. Several supercell thunderstorms developed across East Texas and Western and North Central Louisiana beginning in the late morning of Sunday, April 2, 2017. During the afternoon, a large linear complex and bow echo develop that moved along the Interstate 20 corridor. Several reports of suspected tornado damage were received. Videos of tornadoes were also received from the areas around Alexandria and Jena, LA. In addition to the severe weather, between seven and ten inches of rainfall fell across portions of North Central Louisiana from Toledo Bend eastward towards La Salle Parish, which led to flash flooding.

Surveys teams from the National Weather Service will be deployed to investigate the damage, determine if the cause was a tornado or straight-line winds, and determine how strong the winds were. Due to the widespread area over which the damage occurred and the many areas that need to be investigated, surveys will likely be ongoing for several days.

The details of the survey will be listed below as they become available. All survey information is PRELIMINARY and subject to change.
 

TOTAL TORNADO COUNT = 8

EF1 = 4
EF2 = 4
 
Straight-Line Wind Damage Near Carthage, TX
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LOCATION 2.5 miles E of Carthage,
Panola County, TX
RATING /
PEAK WIND
Straight-line winds
120-130 mph
DATE April 2, 2017
TIME 1:20pm CDT
FATALITIES/
INJURIES
None

Summary:

A severe thunderstorm produced straight-line wind speeds of estimated at 120-130 mph at the Panola County Airport in Carthage, TX. These wind speeds caused an 80-foot long metal support beam that was 8x8 inches to be lifted up with the metal roofing and tossed onto the adjacent street and grassy lot behind the structures from west to east. The back metal wall was supported by six to eight 4x4 inch, by 8-foot steel beams anchored in concrete, which were uprooted and fell to the adjacent ground.

Wind speeds likely funneled into the west end/open end of the metal building causing the aforementioned destruction. This building housed several private airplanes (three ultralight planes and another small single-engine plane), which were tied down and received no damage.

Tornado #1: Near Broaddus, TX
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START
POINT
4.35 miles SW of Broaddus (at Jackson Hill Marina),
San Augustine County, TX
END
POINT
1.85 miles NE of Broaddus,
San Augustine County, TX
RATING /
PEAK WIND
EF1 /
100-110 mph
DATE April 2, 2017
START TIME 1:56pm CDT
END TIME 2:06pm CDT
LENGTH/
WIDTH
6.57 miles/
310 yards
FATALITIES/
INJURIES
None

Summary:

An EF1 tornado initially began as a waterspout over Sam Rayburn Reservoir in Southwest San Augustine County near the Nacogdoches County line. This waterspout moved onshore at the Jackson Hill Marina on FM 2851 as a tornado and intensified as it mowed through a grove of trees in front of the marina convenience store. This is where the tornado was the strongest, with numerous trees snapped and uprooted. Security cameras at the Jackson Hill Marina captured this tornado as it moved onshore.

The tornado crossed Highway 147 at the intersection of FM 3185 near a cemetery and remained on the ground as it crossed Highway 83 on the east side of Broaddus. This is where several trees were snapped and uprooted near the Trinity Baptist Church in Broaddus. One very large hardwood tree was uprooted but bore the brunt of the winds, minimizing the roof damage to the church. However, a covered canopy between the new addition to the church and an older building collapsed as winds accelerated between these two buildings. The tornado remained on the ground but weakened as it crossed FM 2558 before lifting on County Road 319 northeast of Broaddus

Straight-Line Wind Damage Near Pollock, LA
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LOCATION 4.27 miles SE of Pollock,
Grant Parish, LA
RATING /
PEAK WIND
Straight-line winds
75-90 mph
DATE April 2, 2017
TIME 2:41pm CDT
FATALITIES/
INJURIES
None

Summary:

Straight-line thunderstorm winds of 75-90 mph snapped a handful of trees along Perry Loop.

Tornado #2: La Salle Parish, LA
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START
POINT
9 miles SW of Midway,
La Salle Parish, LA
END
POINT
5.82 miles SW of Jena,
La Salle Parish, LA
RATING /
PEAK WIND
EF2 /
115-125 mph
DATE April 2, 2017
START TIME 2:53pm CDT
END TIME 3:04pm CDT
LENGTH/
WIDTH
5.64 miles/
1637 yards
FATALITIES/
INJURIES
None

Summary:

An EF2 tornado touched down along White Sulfur Springs Road, primarily snapping and uprooting trees. However, several outbuildings lost siding or portions of their roofs, and several homes along Hurricane Creek Road and Searcy Eden Road had roof damage.

The EF2 damage occurred in two locations. The first was along White Sulfur Springs Road, where power poles were snapped in two. The second was when an oil derrick toppled along Highway 8. The metal was severely bent, and a concrete anchor block was pulled out of the ground. A second, very rusty oil derrick not only collapse, but crumbled as well.

Tornado #3: Southwest of Florien, LA
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START
POINT
11.7 miles SW of Florien,
Sabine Parish, LA
END
POINT
2.68 miles S of Florien,
Sabine Parish, LA
RATING /
PEAK WIND
EF2 /
95-105 mph
DATE April 2, 2017
START TIME 3:07pm CDT
END TIME 3:23pm CDT
LENGTH/
WIDTH
9.86 miles/
370 yards
FATALITIES/
INJURIES
None

Summary:

This tornado began on Hog Heaven Road in extreme Southwest Sabine Parish near Toledo Bend Reservoir and crossed Ferguson Road, remaining on the ground across heavily wooded areas before crossing Highway 191 near Prospect Road. Numerous trees were snapped and uprooted along this path, but as it approached Highway 191 and Prospect Road, much of the roof was torn off a double-wide manufactured home and a nearby outbuilding was destroyed.

The tornado paralleled Prospect Road and intensified slightly between Victoria Road and Wren Lane, where numerous trees were snapped and uprooted. The tornado crossed Clearwater Road before crossing Prospect Road once again and also Fred Bogle Road, before traveling across heavily wooded areas east of Prospect Road. Several additional trees were snapped and uprooted along and north of Gandy Road before finally lifting before it reached Highway 171 just south of Florien.

Tornado #4: La Salle/Grant Parish Line to Midway
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START
POINT
9 miles E of Pollock,
La Salle Parish, LA
END
POINT
2 miles NW of Midway,
La Salle Parish, LA
RATING /
PEAK WIND
EF2 /
125-135 mph
DATE April 2, 2017
START TIME 3:52pm CDT
END TIME 4:12pm CDT
LENGTH/
WIDTH
13.86 miles/
1.28 miles
FATALITIES/
INJURIES
None

Summary:

This tornado began south-southwest of the community of Rogers along Walker Ferry Road, snapping and uprooting trees as well as several power poles along Highway 127. It cut a clear path through the forest to the community of Belah, LA, snapping and uprooting the mature trees and bending the young trees.

The Belah community received widespread damage. Several trees were snapped and uprooted with some landing on homes and vehicles. Several homes and the school sustained roof damage.

EF2 damage was found not only in Belah, where several power poles were snapped in either two or three pieces, but also in Trout, where a boat business collapsed in on itself. Between Belah and Trout, portions of the forest were nearly clear cut with a great deal of snapped and uprooted trees.

This tornado appeared to lift just north of Highway 84.

Tornado #5: Northwest of Georgetown, LA
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START
POINT
8 miles W of Georgetown,
Grant Parish, LA
END
POINT
8 miles WNW of Georgetown,
Winn Parish, LA
RATING /
PEAK WIND
EF1 /
100-110 mph
DATE April 2, 2017
START TIME 3:54pm CDT
END TIME 3:57pm CDT
LENGTH/
WIDTH
2.66 miles/
1108 yards
FATALITIES/
INJURIES
None

Summary:

This EF1 tornado touched down in the Kisatchie National Forest just south of Highway 500 in Grant Parish, snapping and uprooting trees. As it moved to the north-northeast, into Winn Parish, it cut a clear path through the forest, crossing National Forest Road 610, Zion  Road, Patrick Road, and Highway 472 before finally lifting.

Tornado #6: North of Midway, LA
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START
POINT
4 miles N of Midway,
La Salle Parish, LA
END
POINT
5 miles N of Midway,
La Salle Parish, LA
RATING /
PEAK WIND
EF2 /
125-135 mph
DATE April 2, 2017
START TIME 4:18pm CDT
END TIME 4:20pm CDT
LENGTH/
WIDTH
1.11 miles/
0.25 miles
FATALITIES/
INJURIES
None

Summary:

The supercell that produced Tornado #4 also produced this tornado, which began just west of Highway 127 snapping and uprooting trees. There was widespread damage just east of Highway 127, up through Highway 503, and to Jack Lee Road. Several homes sustained damage due to flying debris and falling trees, including at least one mobile home that was nearly completely destroyed by falling trees. One well constructed home lost its supports for the carport, collapsing the carport on top of two vehicles. While another well-built home, which sat atop of a pier-and-beam structures, was lifted and shifted nearly 10 feet off the pier-beam structure. A third well-built home along Jack Lee Road lost its roof, with only the four brick walls remaining. The snapped power poles and the damage to the well-built homes earned this tornado its EF2 rating. Some roads remained impassible from fallen trees at the time of this survey.

Tornado #7: North of Montgomery, LA
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START
POINT
5 miles NE of Montgomery,
Grant Parish, LA
END
POINT
7 miles NNE of Montgomery,
Winn Parish, LA
RATING /
PEAK WIND
EF1 /
100-110 mph
DATE April 2, 2017
START TIME 4:19pm CDT
END TIME 4:23pm CDT
LENGTH/
WIDTH
4.54 miles/
0.5 miles
FATALITIES/
INJURIES
None

Summary:

This EF1 tornado touched down in Grant Parish along Coon Trail Road, snapping and uprooting trees. As this tornado moved off to the north-northeast into Winn Parish, it continued to snap and uproot trees. A truck and RV were destroyed by falling trees along Davidson Road, and a house sustained roof damage. Along Mitchell and McLane Roads, several outbuildings were damaged, rolled, or destroyed as well as more homes losing roofing material. The tornado finally lifted just north of Harrisonburg Road.

Tornado #8: Northeast of Jena, LA

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START
POINT
6 miles NE of Jena,
La Salle Parish, LA
END
POINT
9 miles NE of Jena,
La Salle Parish, LA
RATING /
PEAK WIND
EF2 /
110-120 mph
DATE April 2, 2017
START TIME 4:22pm CDT
END TIME 4:28pm CDT
LENGTH/
WIDTH
3.43 miles (in La Salle Parish)/
0.5 miles
FATALITIES/
INJURIES
None

Summary:

This EF2 tornado began along Rock Hill Hunting Road snapping trees. As it moved north-northeast along Highway 459, it snapped power poles, as well as numerous trees. An extensive number of trees were snapped or uprooted along Grady Road and Lolita Road. Several homes had roof damage, and a few outbuildings were damaged or destroyed. A mobile home lost its awning along Grady Road.

This tornado continued into Catahoula Parish causing even more damage. The total length of this tornado track was 13.79 miles between the two parishes.

Click here to download the survey KMZ file.
This survey data is preliminary and subject to change as more information becomes available.  Road accessibility and inconsistencies between mapping and GPS software may limit the accuracy of the tracks plotted on this map. Line widths are not representative of actual tornado widths.  The information plotted on this map is intended for general reference use only.

For official post-storm information, use 
Storm Data from the National Centers for Environmental Information.
 
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