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Recap of Severe Weather on Friday & Saturday

HOUSTON (AP) _ The latest on the strong storms buffeting Texas for a second day, causing flooding and possible tornadoes (all times local):

Updates from Saturday:

4:25 p.m.

The death toll from flooding in Texas has reached at least six after authorities found the body of an elderly woman who had been swept away from her home in the Austin area.

Travis County Emergency Services spokeswoman Lisa Block says the woman’s body was found Saturday afternoon. Her name hasn’t been released.

Block says the woman and a man had been swept away by flood waters on Friday from their southeast Travis County home. The man was found alive and treated at a hospital.

Earlier Saturday, the body of a man who went missing after his vehicle was caught in floodwaters in Travis County was also recovered, as well as the bodies of two people in Houston.

Two bodies were recovered in the Austin and San Antonio areas Friday.

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2:30 p.m.

Emergency officials have advised trick-or-treaters in the Houston area to beware of flooded streets after storms dumped up to 8 inches of rain.

A statement from Harris County emergency management officials urged parents to make sure their children avoid flooded areas Saturday night. Authorities say floodwaters are slowly receding, but that creeks, bayous and ditches may be full into Sunday.

The advice came just hours after Houston police recovered two bodies whose deaths officials presumed to be related to weather. Officials say one body was in a rain-swollen ditch, while the other was in a wooded area where there had been water.

At least five people have died in flooding that began with rains in the Austin and San Antonio areas Friday and moved east into Houston.

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1:25 p.m.

A homeowner in the Houston suburb of Friendswood says it’s a blessing that he and his wife were away when a tornado ripped the roof off of their home.

The National Weather Service says a radar-confirmed tornado hit the area about 5:30 a.m. Saturday, damaging several dozen homes.

David McCullough’s sustained the most damage, and he and family members and friends were trying to salvage personal items, photos and documents from the home, where he’s lived for 35 years.

McCullough said had they been there when the tornado hit, “it could have been very bad.”

The rest of the neighborhood that about 25 miles south of Houston had homes with roof damage and tree limbs scatted about lawns and driveways.

The rain has let up in the Houston metro area, which the weather service said received up to 8 inches of rain since Friday.

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1 p.m.

The death toll from flooding in Texas has reached at least five after officials presumed that two deaths in Houston were related to the weather.

City spokesman Michael Walter said Saturday that one body was discovered in a flooded ditch. Walter says the other body was located in a wooded area east of downtown Houston, where there had been water.

Houston Fire Department Senior Capt. Ruy (ROO’-ee) Lozano declined to release the gender or other information about the two individuals, pending notification of next of kin. Walter said the coroner will make the final confirmation of the cause of death.

On Friday, two bodies were recovered after flooding in the Austin and San Antonio areas. A third was found Saturday in Travis County and was a man who went missing after his vehicle was caught in floodwaters.

The search continues for a woman who was swept away from her Austin-area home Friday.

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11:45 a.m.

The death toll in Central Texas flooding has reached at least three after emergency services officials recovered a body. Another person is still missing.

Travis County Emergency Services spokeswoman Lisa Block says the body of man who was driving a vehicle Friday that was swept away near Elroy was recovered Saturday morning.

Block says several other people managed to escape from the flooded vehicle in the community that’s southeast of Austin. She had no immediate details on where the victim was located or the survivors.

Block says a woman who was caught in floodwaters Friday near her home in the same area remains missing. Block says the woman’s husband was rescued from the water.

Two other bodies were recovered Friday amid heavy rain and flooding in the San Antonio and Austin areas.

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11:20 a.m.

Some light rail service has resumed in Houston amid storms that flooded roadways and sent bayous out of their banks.

The Metropolitan Transit Authority of Houston reported limited rail service resumed late Saturday morning in parts of Houston. Officials had suspended all service on the nearly 23-mile light rail line due to heavy rain and flooding.

The National Weather Service issued a flash flood warning for parts of Harris, Brazoria, Chambers, Galveston and Liberty counties until midday Saturday.

A separate flash flood warning covered parts of southeast Texas, including Orange, Jasper and Newton counties, until early Saturday afternoon. Flooding was predicted for the Beaumont area.

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10:30 a.m.

More than 70 people spent the night at shelters in Central Texas after storms and flooding threatened or damaged their homes.

Hays County authorities said Saturday that shelters in San Marcos housed 67 people. One in Kyle had seven evacuees, and one person spent the night at Wimberley High School.

The Lehman and Wimberley shelters will close Saturday as floodwaters receded and damage assessments began. The shelter at Miller Middle School in San Marcos remained open amid cleanup.

Hundreds of low-water crossings were closed Saturday in Hays County, south of Austin.

Some residents in southeast Travis County were notified Saturday to evacuate to higher ground. Travis County Emergency Management officials say Capital Metro buses, the public transit system for the Austin area, were available to help transport evacuees to a recreation center set up as a shelter.

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10 a.m.

The National Weather Service says tornadoes caused damage in three Houston-area communities.

Meteorologist Patrick Blood says between 10 and 30 homes were damaged about 7 a.m. in a subdivision in eastern Harris County by a radar-confirmed tornado.

In the Houston suburb of Friendswood, one home had a collapsed roof from a tornado that hit about 5:30 a.m. Friendswood officials say no one was injured because the home’s residents were away. About 30 other homes had minor damage.

Officials had previously reported that about 25 trailer homes were damaged and two people were injured at about 5 a.m. when a radar-confirmed tornado went through Alvin, located 30 miles south of Houston.

Blood says south-central Harris County, including Houston, has received up to 8 inches of rain since Friday.

The Houston Fire Department says it’s responded to more than 90 water rescues.
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9:25 a.m.

At least two people have been hurt and more than two-dozen mobile homes damaged after a possible tornado south of Houston.

The National Weather Service says strong winds struck around 5 a.m. Saturday in Brazoria County, near Alvin.

Meteorologist Patrick Blood says about 25 trailer homes were damaged and two people were injured. He did not immediately have additional information.

Blood says south-central Harris County, including Houston, has received up to 8 inches of rain since Friday. Forecasters expect another one or two inches more an hour into early Saturday afternoon.

Blood says that will lead to standing water and street flooding, and that some bayous are out of their banks and contributing to the flooding.

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9 a.m.

Storms have made travel difficult in the Houston area, where heavy rain and flooding have washed out roads and stopped some public transit.

Houston’s nearly 23-mile light rail system suspended service Saturday due to heavy rain. Houston emergency management officials say high water was also affecting public bus routes and swamping major highways.

Authorities say the Houston area had received up to 7 inches of rain since Friday night.

The National Weather Service has issued a flash flood watch for areas near Houston, Galveston, Bryan, College Station, Tyler and Texarkana until Saturday afternoon.

Nearly 12,000 customers of Dallas-based utility Oncor (ON’-kor) were without power Saturday, mainly in parts of East Texas.

To the west, Austin-Bergstrom International Airport canceled more than 40 flights Saturday. The area received more than 16 inches of rain Friday, and flights were suspended when the control tower was flooded.

Updates from Friday:

5 p.m.

Authorities say at least one person is dead and another missing in Texas following punishing storms that dumped upward of 16 inches of rain around Austin and San Antonio.

The Travis County Emergency Management office said Friday that the body of a driver missing in floodwaters had been recovered. He was described as a man in his late 40s or early 50s and was found in one of the areas hit hardest by a storm system that caused three suspected tornadoes elsewhere.

The death is the first confirmed casualty since the downpour began before dawn. Authorities say a woman elsewhere in the county also remained missing.

The rain flooded the control tower at Austin Bergstrom International Airport and had suspended all flights before limited service resumed later Friday.

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This has been corrected to show that the person found dead was a driver, not a diver.

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3:45 p.m.

Officials in Comal County, just northeast of San Antonio, have declared a local state of disaster because of ongoing flash flooding.

The county proclamation says the area “has suffered widespread or severe damage, injury or loss of life or property” or that there’s a threat of those occurring.

Some parts of the county have received 11 inches of rain.

In nearby Hays County, Interstate 35 south of Austin has reopened three hours after being closed by flash floodwaters.

However, Hays County spokeswoman Laureen Chernow says traffic on the highway remains slow and congested. She says many other roads in Hays County remain closed by floodwaters and that people should not drive in the area unless absolutely necessary.

The flooding affected the same area devastated by torrential rains over Memorial Day weekend.

2:40 p.m.

Four students with special needs and two adults have been rescued from a school bus caught in floodwaters that reached the top of the vehicle’s wheels near San Antonio.

The Bexar (bayr) County Sheriff’s Office says the rescue Friday morning involved a Northside Independent School District bus near Helotes (hel-OH’-tis).

The vehicle became trapped as storms swamped parts of Central and South Texas. Sheriff’s spokesman James Keith says the bus was headed to Los Reyes Elementary School when the vehicle got stranded in high water.

Emergency personnel used an extension ladder to reach the bus and rescue the driver and passengers.

All of the children were checked by medical personnel, then transported to school.

Investigators will review whether that bus driver and another Northside ISD driver whose bus was also caught in flooding and five people rescued should be ticketed.

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2 p.m.

Authorities have rescued members of a church group staying at a Wimberley inn that flooded after heavy rains caused a nearby creek to overflow.

Kathleen Haney was among eight members of the Dallas group who found themselves trapped by rushing waters Friday on the second floor of the bed-and-breakfast.

She says National Guardsmen and firefighters strung a rope between the inn’s staircase and higher ground, and then guided the church members across.

Haney says at least 5 feet of water snapped trees and swept away three of the church members’ cars.

The eight church members and another couple staying at the inn were brought to safety, along with the inn’s owners. They were taken to a community center in Wimberley, where about 100 evacuees were getting ready to leave Friday afternoon.
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1:30 p.m.

Forecasters say flooded parts of Texas can’t handle another soaking after getting upward of 16 inches of rain in a matter of hours but that more storms might be on the way.

National Weather Service meteorologist Jason Runyen said Friday that a fast-moving weather disturbance form Mexico has overwhelmed already-saturated neighborhoods and swollen rivers between Austin and San Antonio. It’s the same South Texas region that remnants of Hurricane Patricia pummeled last week.

Runyen said the rain will leave by the weekend but not before more showers potentially sock the area again Friday afternoon.

The Federal Aviation Administration also says that flights out of Austin remain suspended after 6 inches of water flooded into the ground floor of the air traffic control tower.

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12 p.m.

A fast-moving storm packing heavy rain and destructive winds has overwhelmed rivers and prompted evacuations in the same area southwest of Austin that saw devastating spring floods.

The Blanco River in Wimberley on Friday swelled to about 26 feet, well above its 13-foot flood stage. Residents were being evacuated from the area and a community center was opened to shelter people.

Torrential rains over Memorial Day weekend inundated the Blanco, and raging river waters tore at least one home from its foundation, killing members of two families inside.

The storms at that time killed more than 30 people in Texas and Oklahoma.

No fatalities have been reported from Friday’s storm as emergency personnel across South and Central Texas rushed to close roadways overwhelmed by water and respond to high-water rescues.

Department of Public Safety Sgt. Jason Reyes says minor injuries were reported southeast of San Antonio where possible tornadoes destroyed buildings.

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11:45 a.m.

The Austin airport has temporarily closed its airfield due to torrential rains and heavy winds rolling through Central Texas.

Austin-Bergstrom International Airport said in a tweet that no flights are taking off or landing due to weather, though the airport remains open.

Fast-moving rainstorms Friday morning soaked San Marcos and other communities south of Austin, as well as the Texas capital. Water on the road forced police and emergency officials to close several miles of Interstate 35 south of Austin. That compelled southbound traffic to turn around and head north using the shoulder and what are normally southbound lanes.

Traffic moving south was backed up for miles, including in Buda, about 20 miles south of downtown Austin.

A possible tornado also destroyed some buildings in Wilson, Medina and Guadalupe counties.

Tornado watch has been extended until 7 p.m. Friday for the following counties:

AUSTIN
BASTROP
BRAZOS
BURLESON
CALDWELL
COLORADO
FAYETTE
LEE
TRAVIS
WASHINGTON
WILLIAMSON

A flash flood watch is in effect for the following counties from Friday at 10 p.m. through Saturday afternoon:

AUSTIN
BRAZORIA
BRAZOS
BURLESON
CHAMBERS
COLORADO
FORT BEND
GALVESTON
GRIMES
HARRIS
HOUSTON
JACKSON
LIBERTY
MADISON
MATAGORDA
MONTGOMERY
POLK
SAN JACINTO
TRINITY
WALKER
WALLER
WASHINGTON
WHARTON

A tornado watch is in effect until noon Friday for the following counties:

ATASCOSA
AUSTIN
BANDERA
BASTROP
BEXAR
BLANCO
BRAZOS
BURLESON
CALDWELL
COLORADO
COMAL
DEWITT
FAYETTE
FRIO
GONZALES
GUADALUPE
HAYS
KARNES
KENDALL
LAVACA
LEE
MEDINA
TRAVIS
WASHINGTON
WHARTON
WILLIAMSON
WILSON

Reported Friday at 10 a.m.:

SAN ANTONIO (AP) _ Storms in Central and South Texas have damaged some buildings but no injuries were immediately reported.

The National Weather Service was trying to confirm possible tornadoes Friday in Wilson, Medina (muh-DEE’-nuh) and Guadalupe counties. Winds gusted to 60 mph.

A tornado watch was in effect for the Austin and San Antonio areas through midday Friday.

Guadalupe County sheriff’s Capt. Tom Meeley (MEE’-lee) says some houses and buildings between Seguin (sih-GEEN’) and Zorn lost their roofs.

Several buildings were damaged in downtown D’Hanis (duh-HAH’-nuhs), a Medina County town of about 750 located 40 miles west of San Antonio.

Some vehicles were destroyed in Floresville, in Wilson County, where power lines also went down.

Several students and adults were rescued when their school bus became stranded in high water near San Antonio.

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Posted by on Oct 31 2015. Filed under Featured Stories, News.

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