ARLINGTON, Texas – The National Weather Service says an EF-2 tornado was responsible for significant damage during storms Tuesday night in Arlington.
Police say some buildings collapsed and at least three apartment complexes were destroyed. The Arlington Fire Department says as a result of last night’s tornado, at least three people were hospitalized with minor injuries.
NWS officials were in the field on Wednesday to evaluate the damage and gave determined the tornado had preliminary rating of an EF-2.
The tornado touched down near West Mayfield and South Bowman road, carving a five-mile path, with top winds at 115 miles per hour, and injuring five people, according to the National Weather Service report.
There was roof damage at the Waterdance Apartment Complex along Pioneer Parkway at Center Street in east Arlington. Large sections of the roof landed on cars in the parking lot.
“We were inside we were making food and all of a sudden it just started shaking really bad and the whole ceiling just flew like really bad, and we took cover and just tried to make it out,” said resident Alan Garcia. “It just happened so fast, I don’t even know it was just crazy.”
Many who lived in the now-damaged apartments are counting their blessings during an already difficult year.
“The whole ceiling, I mean it just came away from the wall, the whole ceiling and in her bedroom the walls collapsed in too,” said resident Wilma Morris.
Morris said while the worst of the storm lasted just minutes, it felt like an eternity.
“I was on the couch, she threw her body over me, the ceiling fan fell, and the whole roof lifted up,” she said.
At least 75 families are displaced and a total of three apartment complexes have been damaged.
While dozens were displaced, they are thankful to be alive. During this pandemic, people still have a lot to be thankful for.
After Tuesday night’s EF-2 tornado, dozens of families in Arlington know it firsthand.
“It makes me thankful that we’re okay, but it makes me sad, it’s sad that some people are going to spend Thanksgiving away from their homes,” said resident Dody Fee.
“We were sleeping, and it was just, just like a nightmare, oh my gosh,” Tamanna Orni recalled.
Families returned to their apartments Wednesday morning, hoping to find a few belongings that weren’t destroyed.
“We did grab as much as we can…memories…we try,” Orni said.
Officials went door-to-door, making sure no one was inside any of the buildings before putting up fencing.
Morris had just finished most of her Thanksgiving food prep Tuesday night, but said those things can be replaced.
“We don’t have anything. I personally don’t have any clothes at all. But you know what, that’s material, I was happy the kids got my husband’s ashes for me. What can I say, we are here for Thanksgiving,” she said.
Her granddaughter is thankful this Thanksgiving that she can still spend it with her loved ones.
“Thanksgiving will have a different meaning, glad she will be there, because I can’t do a turkey, so she gets to help,” Kayla Morris said.
A carport at a neighboring complex came down onto some vehicles.
There are some homes that were damaged, as well as a church, fast food restaurants and other nearby businesses.