June 9, 2014

Thunderstorms sweep through DFW

Some spots in the Dallas-Fort Worth area get more than an inch of rain.

Thunderstorms that hit Tarrant County’s western edge about 5 a.m. swept through the Dallas-Fort Worth area, knocking out power to thousands, canceling or delaying flights at Dallas/Fort Worth Airport and dumping 1/2 inch to an inch or more of rain.

At 8 a.m., the electricity provider Oncor was showing more than 22,000 DFW-area customers without power due to lightning and winds that Tom Bradshaw, a National Weather Service meteorologist, said gusted to 50 miles an hour. By 9 a.m. there were 12,000 still without power.

The FAA temporarily reduced DFW Airport’s capacity, slowing down departures and arrivals until the storm passed.

“This resulted in 31 flight departure cancellations and 32 flight arrival cancellations, along with some flight delays,” said airport spokesman David Magaña. “As of 9 a.m., flight operations at DFW had returned to normal.”

The highest concentration of power outages was in Rockwall, said Oncor spokesman Kris Spears.

“Tarrant County and west of there never saw more than 4,000,” Spears said. “Lightning affected a lot of equipment, and high winds took down trees and power lines along with them.”

Spears couldn’t predict how long it would be before power was restored to everyone, but he said extra workers have been called in to fix things. For those who didn’t lose power and wanted the rain, the weather was good news.

“For a second morning in a row, we had a pretty good line of thunderstorms come out of the panhandle,” Bradshaw said. “The line formed in New Mexico and moved overnight into Texas. Most of it had moved out of Tarrant County by 7 a.m.”

By 7:30 a.m., the line of storms stretched from Hill County to Canton as it continued to drop south, Bradshaw said.

“The clouds should break up and we’ll see some blue skies and peeks of sunshine this afternoon,” he said. “It will be a lot like Sunday.”

Rainfall averaged 1/2 to 1 inch across Tarrant County. D/FW Airport had 0.61 inch as of 7:30 a.m., Bradshaw said. That may be all the area gets this week.

“Things are looking drier for the rest of the week,” Bradshaw said. “There’s a 30 percent chance of rain on Thursday when another little system comes through.”

Temperatures will be in the mid-80s Tuesday, but Bradshaw predicted the low 90s for Wednesday and Thursday. Friday should see a high in the upper 80s, but clear skies, he said.

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