April 3rd, 2012
02:51 PM ET

Tornadoes thrash Dallas area

Multiple tornadoes struck the Dallas-Fort Worth area in Texas early Tuesday afternoon. CNN and its Texas affiliates are updating developments as they come in.

Are you there? When it is safe to do so, share your pictures and video via iReport.

Follow continuing developments here.

[Update 3:51 p.m. ET] Lt. Tim Jones of the Johnson County sheriff's department told CNN that "911 is going off the wall with people calling in with reports of sightings."

He reported multiple tornado touchdowns across the county, including in the city of Cleburne, south of Fort Worth and southwest of Dallas.

A new tornado warning was issued about 2:45 p.m. CT for Arlington, which is between Dallas and Fort Worth.

[Update 3:40 p.m. ET] DFW airport spokesman David Magana told CNN that people in the airport's passenger terminals had been herded away from windows in waiting areas.

"We have all kinds of shelters. We use all the available space we have including stairwells, store rooms and restrooms, that we can use," Magana said. "We're not shy about moving people around."

He advised people to stay away from the airport until all danger had passed.

[Update 3:33 p.m. ET] CNN's Ed Lavandera, who was in Dallas when the tornado struck, said there were several isolated cells of storms throughout the area.
Lavandara said the track of one tornado would have taken it through a heavily populated area near the stadiums of the Dallas Cowboys and Texas Rangers, as well as Six Flags amusement park. If the storm had stayed on the ground there, it would have caused catastrophic devastation, he said.

"We right now are in shelter ourselves," Red Cross spokesperson Anita Foster told CNN. "Some of our teams that are on the southern end of the metroplex have started making plans for how we are going to respond . ... Many people are going to need help."

She said Red Cross workers would fan out across the area "as soon as it's safe, as soon as we can get out of our door."
Foster warned people to heed warning sirens and seek shelter in interior areas of structures.
Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport halted all takeoffs and landings until the storm system ends.
CNN meteoroligist said hailstones 3 inches in diameter were being reported. CNN affiliate CBSDFW showed evening-like darkness amid heavy rain at 2:25 p.m. CT.

[Update 3:13 p.m. ET] At 2:05 pm CT (3:05 ET) Tuesday afternoon, trained weather spotters reported a tornado on the ground five miles east of downtown Dallas, Texas. The tornado is moving northeast at 20 mph.

[Update 3:09 p.m. ET] After the tornado passed through, CNN affiliate CBSDFW showed dozens of orange Schneider trucks in various states of damage and disarray.

CNN affiliate WFAA showed severe damage to some homes in Lancaster,  Texas.

[Update 2:59 p.m. ET] Separate tornadoes in Texas barreled toward the Dallas-Forth Worth area Tuesday, prompting the National Weather Service to issue tornado emergencies.
Video from CNN affiliate WFAA broadcast dramatic footage of the scene, showing truck trailers being lifted and tossed like toys. Ominous clouds filled the skies.
There were no immediate reports of major injuries or damage, but CNN's Chad Myers said the worst may be yet to come.
"Both storms right now are getting bigger. They both have been rotating, and they both have significant possibilities of damage on the ground heading into DFW," he said.
The weather service urged people in the area to move to a bathroom, closet or hallway on the lowest floor of their buildings and take cover.

[Original post 2:51 p.m. ET] An apparent tornado ripped through Dallas County, Texas, Tuesday afternoon.

A news helicopter from Dallas CNN affiliate WFAA followed a funnel cloud churning through a truck terminal, tossing 80-foot metal cargo trailers hundreds of feet in the air.

CNN meteorologist Jacqui Jeras tweeted, "Watching homes being damaged now in Dallas. Large pieces of debris in the air. Lots of power flashes."

Check back frequently for updates as this story continues to develop.

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Filed under: Texas • Tornadoes • Weather
soundoff (195 Responses)
  1. troll2012

    LETS SEE HOW MANY RESPOND TO MY STUPID POSTS LOL BUT SERIOUS WHY WOULD SOME PEOPLE BUILD A UNDERGROUND SHELTER TO PROTECT THEM ON 12-21-2012?? IT REALLY WONT SAVE YOU MAYBE IF YOU WERE ON THE MOON LOL

    April 4, 2012 at 1:32 am | Report abuse | Reply
  2. TvNyc

    Meteorologists should be paying attention to the first heat wave of the summer, which could happen in mid May...This could cause a mega tornado. The tornado could be wider than 100 miles as big as a real low pressure. As this cool air is lingering around a little longer than originally expected because of the real mild winter, the warm air will win out but as it does it could spawn the tornado of the millenium that could destroy everything. It could happen tomorrow.

    April 4, 2012 at 2:04 am | Report abuse | Reply
    • JerseyJeff

      It's gonna be a very interesting summer, weather-wise. Fires in the West and Central parts of the country, predicted droughts already and a robust tornado and hurricane season. Not a good year in the insurance business.

      April 4, 2012 at 6:47 am | Report abuse |
    • leeintulsa

      @tvnyc: so is it tomorrow or may? i'm trying to make plans here..

      April 4, 2012 at 7:55 am | Report abuse |
    • anthony

      are you a metoligist

      i like tornadoes ohh and im 9 can you help me figure out htings about tornadoes

      April 4, 2012 at 8:38 am | Report abuse |
  3. N Tyler

    I thank the Lord nobody got hurt or kill.This person said you people what do you some you need to live in the area and see what you would i have a lost of family there.Please dont start saying people stealing they to scared and worryed and people down s stick together belive or not.

    April 4, 2012 at 2:18 am | Report abuse | Reply
  4. Albuquerque, Turkey

    It couldn't have happened to a nicer bunch of Ignorant, Racist, White-trash.

    Oh, wait it could've. Maybe they could've had the government make some shelters or regulated that shelters be mandatory. Nevermind that would interfer with their Freedom to be stupid.

    April 4, 2012 at 4:26 am | Report abuse | Reply
  5. JerseyJeff

    What footage! To see $250k cabs and trailers being tossed like lincoln logs!
    I wonder if the Republican from that district supports the Ryann budget that cuts funding for storm detection and FEMA. I have a feeling a lot of Republican voters in Fort Worth and Dallas are feeling pretty liberal today.

    April 4, 2012 at 6:43 am | Report abuse | Reply
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  8. John

    GOD WILL SEE U THROUGH, KEEP PRAYING.

    April 4, 2012 at 11:20 am | Report abuse | Reply
  9. prayfordallas

    OMG! my friend just told me about this... here is more footage of the Tornado throwing around Semi-Trucks... what an awful sight bitly.com/Hgszik – I'm thankful to live in CA

    April 4, 2012 at 1:57 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  10. job.Bradshaw

    now thats a dozer from heaven making them get right................................................. the next tornado will level a town .. it will shake the sinners up and will it be a dread and great ful thing.....................see facebook job.Bradshaw@live.com see his notes ... hes the boss the lord of heaven has visted his people

    April 4, 2012 at 1:58 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  11. troll2012

    whatever either way were all doomed in dec

    April 5, 2012 at 1:16 am | Report abuse | Reply
  12. troll2012

    hey lets start a new post lol how many of you out there really think 12/21/2012 will be the end of the world??????

    April 5, 2012 at 1:18 am | Report abuse | Reply
  13. Gertrude Sandor

    You folks need to check your maps. Dallas isn't the only game in town. . .in fact, Fort Worth was appreciably closer
    to most of the smaller towns that were devastated by the tornado but all your typed blurbs under the picture only
    said "Dallas spared", tornado damage in the Dallas area" - come on down, Fort Worth is eversomuch nicer than Big D!
    Secondly, have your staff check their Spell Checks OR learn to spell like we did in the '50s. Candidate is spelled with a
    second "d" – you folks have been putting just one in. And it's going to be a long haul until November.

    April 5, 2012 at 10:24 am | Report abuse | Reply
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    April 9, 2012 at 5:03 am | Report abuse | Reply
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    April 10, 2012 at 5:30 am | Report abuse | Reply
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