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Saturday 19 October 2019

Six killed in spate of tornadoes

Johnny Ortiz, left, and James South carry Miguel Morales, who was injured in a Texas tornado (AP)
Johnny Ortiz, left, and James South carry Miguel Morales, who was injured in a Texas tornado (AP)
An victim is carried to an ambulance in Granbury, Texas, after a tornado caused 'multiple fatalities' (AP)
A lorry landed on a car that was parked in front of a home in Cleburne, Texas during the storm (AP/Dallas Morning News)
A trailer that has landed on a car parked in front of a home in Texas (AP/The Dallas Morning News)

Ten tornadoes have wreaked havoc in several small communities in Texas, leaving at least six people dead, dozens injured and hundreds homeless.

Emergency responders are still searching for missing people amid the devastation.

The worst-hit area was Granbury, where authorities said a storm tore through two neighbourhoods. Other tornadoes damaged nearby Cleburne and Millsap.

Sheriff Roger Deeds reported a number of deaths, adding: "Some were found in houses, some were found around houses." He added that the total could climb as crews pick through the rubble of shattered homes.

About 50 people were taken to a hospital in the town, where 14 were admitted for treatment of injuries and two were transferred to a hospital in Fort Worth, about 35 miles away.

As many as 100 people were injured, said Matt Zavadsky, spokesman for MedStar Mobile Healthcare. His company sent three ambulances and a medical bus from its Fort Worth base to Granbury.

Mr Deeds said officials were trying to account for 14 people, but it was not clear if they were missing or were away from the area for other reasons.

Hardest hit were two neighbourhoods in the southern end of the town of about 8,000 residents about 65 miles south west of Dallas.

The same storm spawned another tornado that witnesses told the National Weather Service was a mile wide. That twister tore through the south-western quadrant of Cleburne, a courthouse city of about 30,000 residents about 25 miles south east of Granbury.

There were no reports of deaths in that storm, Cleburne Mayor Scott Cain said, "but we do have the potential for some injuries". Mr Cain had no estimate on the number of homes damaged, but he said he expected the number to soar into the dozens based on his inspection of damage ranging from roof damage to total destruction.

PA Media

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