High winds cause major damage in Stafford area

Courtney Fischer Image
Monday, May 22, 2017
Damage from high winds and heavy rain in Fort Bend County
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Residents are cleaning up after high winds caused major damage this morning when a storm hit parts of Fort Bend County.

STAFFORD, Texas (KTRK) -- Residents are cleaning up after high winds caused major damage this morning when a storm hit parts of Fort Bend County.

The National Weather Service told ABC13 that they will send a meteorologist to the area Monday afternoon to survey the damage and see if it was, in fact, a small tornado that touched down around JoAnn and Fifth streets.

Eyewitness News reporter Courtney Fischer spoke to several residents who live in the area after trees crashed down on homes and vehicles.

"It got bad right here. The tree fell on top of my truck," a resident said.

Adriana Sardinas has lived in the neighborhood for 32 years and said she's never seen damage like this.

"Not even during Ike was it this bad," Sardinas said. "My aunt's house next-door, there are trees all over the trailer."

Sardinas walked us to her aunt's mobile home where a massive limb from a 30-foot oak tree fell on top of the roof. Trees and a snapped light pole littered her parents' yard too.

She said she heard the storm around 6:30 a.m. when it started with hail.

"Dunk, dunk, dunk," Sardinas said, imitating the sound of the hail on her tin roof. "Then it got faster and then I heard a big wind."

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Across the street, Veronica Whitley said her parents heard it too.

"My mom said it lasted maybe three to five minutes, then she heard a woosh and that was it," Whitley said. "We got a lot of fences down, trees down."

Up and down the streets in the neighborhood, you'll find trees down and power out. But perhaps the worst damage is a business at the end of JoAnn Street.

At Rodriguez Construction Group, a metal awning bolted into the ground was ripped from the concrete.

"Crumpled it up like paper and threw it over the fence. It's ridiculous," owner Dawn Rodriguez told ABC13.

Ironically, the metal structure was put up two years ago to protect equipment from wind and rain.

"I'm just kind of in shock because you don't expect that. I mean, it's made of steel," Rodriguez said as she looked at the damage.

WATCH: Surveillance video shows storm blowing through Stafford

She estimates it will cost between $20,000 and $30,000 to fix it.

"I don't see how it could be anything other than a tornado," Rodriguez said.

The National Weather Service has issued a Tornado Watch for parts of southeast Texas until 1 p.m. Stay with Eyewitness News for updates throughout the day as we continue to track the storm.

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