1 death reported after tornado hits Eastland County

At least one person was killed and one injured Saturday after a tornado struck a rural area of Eastland County, an official said.

A second tornado touched down north of Burkburnett shortly before 6 p.m., a police dispatcher said. Burkburnett is about 15 miles north of Wichita Falls. No damage estimate was available.

Early Sunday, a line of strong storms stretching into Cooke County along the Oklahoma border moved swiftyly through the Fort Worth area headed east toward Dallas, with no initial reports of major damage or injury. Grapevine authorities reported trees down and roof damage near the border with Southlake.

DFW Airport reported a ground stoppage shortly before 8 a.m., according to WFAA.com. Check your flight status here.

Authorities warned of street flooding as the storms moved through. Residents posted photos and videos of flooding and tree damage on social media early Sunday.

On Saturday in Eastland County, about 100 miles west of Fort Worth, Cisco Fire Chief Walter Fairbanks confirmed a storm-related death and injury, Abilene TV station KTAB reported.

Eastland County Judge Rex Fields, who also serves as the county’s emergency services coordinator, said there was “a considerable amount of damage,” but rain was making damage assessment difficult.

Homes were lost, and authorities were going house to house to try to get a better handle on the situation, he said.

Eastland County also was hit by hail up to 3 inches in diameter, said Anthony Bain, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service.

Storm seen from downtown Fort Worth. (Star-Telegram/Patrick M. Walker)

The storm moved westward, and by 9 p.m. Saturday there were no tornado warnings, but a tornado watch was in effect until 11 p.m.

“Right now the main threat is still large hail and damaging straight-line winds,” Bain said.

The winds could reach speeds of 65 to 70 mph.

As the storm moved in, the plug was pulled on Fort Worth’s Untapped beer and music festival at Panther Island Pavilion. The festival almost made it to the end of its seven-hour run time. But it was stopped about 9 p.m. during Big Data’s set. Organizers said it might resume if the storm passed in time.

Storms also brought heavy rain and quarter-size hail to parts of southwest Oklahoma on Saturday afternoon, but meteorologists said there was so much rain — and so little sun — that the tornado threat there lessened throughout the day.

The weather service forecast more showers and storms Sunday. A flash flood watch is in effect until Monday morning, and a severe thunderstorm watch was in effect until 9 a.m.

Threatening skies stretched beyond the Plains states, as twin weather systems stretching from the Carolinas to California produced an unseasonably early tropical storm in the Atlantic and a late-season snowstorm in the Rocky Mountains. Tropical Storm Ana’s forecast track is expected to go near the coasts of North and South Carolina on Sunday.

Meanwhile, up to 5 inches of snow was possible in the Nebraska Panhandle this weekend, and parts of South Dakota were expected to get 12 to 24 inches of snow, according to the weather service.

Staff writer Cary Darling contributed to this report.

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