April 4th, 2012
10:03 AM ET

Dallas mayor: It's a 'miracle' nobody died in tornadoes

Tractor-trailers weighing tens of thousands of pounds flew through the air. Roofs were ripped off homes, and other houses were left in complete tatters.

Yet no deaths have been reported after devastating tornadoes worked their way through the Dallas-Forth Worth and Arlington areas of Texas.

"It looks like the Dallas-Fort Worth area really dodged a bullet," Dallas Mayor Michael Rawlings told CNN. "I mean we've got hundreds and hundreds of homes destroyed but amazingly no fatalities."

Between six and 13 tornadoes may have touched down Tuesday in north Texas, the National Weather Service in Dallas-Fort Worth said. The number is an estimate pending a survey and damage assessment.

Rawlings said that as he looked at footage of tractor-trailers tossed about like lightweight toys, he was struck by how lucky it was nobody died.

"(Those) tractor-trailers were put into the back of homes and those homes were flattened," he said. "It was amazing nobody was in that home."

The storms left thousands of people without power and destroyed hundreds of homes.

"We're looking at a miracle here," Rawlings said. "We're looking at something amazing."

In Arlington, three people were taken to a hospital, and at least 150 homes were destroyed, according to Mayor Robert Cluck.

"We've done the primary search," Cluck said. "We feel as though we have everybody now, but they won't give up until they have done all the other searches."

Residents described scenes of horror and devastation as they watched massive twisters head their way. They all spoke of their terror as they saw debris - glass, cars and parts of houses - flying by them.

Rescuers will dig through smashed buildings Wednesday, hunting for possible victims of the tornadoes. But for now, it appears that the area may have been spared in a remarkable way.

"Somehow this whole thing all worked out," Rawlings said.

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Filed under: Texas • Tornadoes
soundoff (120 Responses)
  1. stubbs2

    I have a lot of family in that area and have yet to be able to find out about any of them. My prayers are with all who have been affected by these storms!

    April 4, 2012 at 10:36 am | Report abuse |
    • CBinWA

      stubbs2- I cannot imagine how stressful that must be. I hope that they are all OK.

      April 4, 2012 at 11:02 am | Report abuse |
  2. BOMBO ©

    An elected official used the word "miracle".

    And the atheists who like to spend their free time needlessly attacking religious people, belittling their beliefs, calling for full separation of church and state, will get their panties in a bunch...............nnnnnnnnnnnnow.

    April 4, 2012 at 10:44 am | Report abuse |
    • Rosemary

      That's something I don't understand. These "athiest Liberals" who claim they believe everyone should be able to do their own thing, always seem to be so mad because some people have a belief system. I think they are so mad because they wish "they" could believe in something.

      April 4, 2012 at 11:29 am | Report abuse |
    • bspurloc

      and the anti science loons will say.... I saw the hand of god throw the trailers into the air, he is mad that we have a muslim president and our only option is to vote for a mormon

      April 4, 2012 at 11:53 am | Report abuse |
    • George

      It would have been a greater miracle to have sent the storm over an uninhabited area. But, no..........

      April 4, 2012 at 11:59 am | Report abuse |
    • Dan

      I actually don't care if you believe in fairy tales.

      April 4, 2012 at 12:38 pm | Report abuse |
    • BOMBO ©

      Maybe I should clarify. I personally do not believe God chose to spare any particular people in this storm, any more than He chose to aim a tornado at them in the first place. I am not going to shout from the rooftops about God's devine Providence when people are saved from a disaster, nor do I see disasters as a sign of God's wrath. I have my beliefs. I'm not going to write a book about it.

      But some people do believe these sorts of things, and it doesn't particularly bother me when they state what they believe. What does bother me is people with a superiority complex jumping in and making fun of them. Does it really bother any of you that much if someone else feels compelled to thank God for something? And if so, why should it? Why get so bent out of shape about what other people believe? I don't understand.

      April 4, 2012 at 1:28 pm | Report abuse |
    • leeintulsa

      @bombo: i don't care what people think in general, either. and the vast majority of these posts, i had no comment for.

      my problem comes when they try to say the people on the ground, some of them life-saving heroes, are irrelevent because 'god' saved dallas.

      it also implies the people of dallas are somehow more deserving of god's protection than the people of joplin or indiana for just recent examples. i find it ugly and insensitive, things *i* get accused of for all the time. for jokes – which are clearly meant not to be taken seriously.

      April 4, 2012 at 1:58 pm | Report abuse |
  3. bobcat (in a hat) ©

    After seeing the videos and aftermath of these storms, it really is a miracle nobody was killed. I too have family in the area, and it was a very scary number of hours before we were able to contact them. All is well. I hope too that all is well for you and yours stubbs2.

    April 4, 2012 at 11:13 am | Report abuse |
  4. Definitely a miracle

    To stubbs2- phone service is spotty down here in the Dallas area. Lot of power outages too. Mobile phone networks are spotty too. Try contacting the church your family goes to or the local shelter. Some people are reported to have gone to ER but apparently only mild/moderate injuries. Still no deaths or major injuries reported. Good luck and God bless.

    April 4, 2012 at 11:24 am | Report abuse |
  5. Miracle? Yes!

    It was a blessing it hit during daylight. People were able to spot the tornadoes and take cover. Lots of material things lost. People homeless and all of their belongings and family keepsakes gone but lives saved. Businesses destroyed and jobs lost but lives spared. Lots of scared people and some emotional trauma but doing ok.

    April 4, 2012 at 11:32 am | Report abuse |
  6. bspurloc

    "It was a blessing it hit during daylight. People were able to spot the tornadoes and take cover." You mean like in the video of trailers being tossed HUNDREDS into the air and people driving slowly by the area? I mean if I saw trailers HUNDREDS into the air I'de have my foot through the floor to get away from them

    April 4, 2012 at 11:56 am | Report abuse |
  7. saywhat

    Indeed a miracle and thank goodness.
    @ bobcat
    glad to hear that your family is safe. Our thoughts and prayers are with those affected.

    April 4, 2012 at 11:57 am | Report abuse |
  8. saywhat

    Any word from @banasy reg her daughter?

    April 4, 2012 at 11:58 am | Report abuse |
    • leeintulsa

      @saywhat: she's fine

      April 4, 2012 at 12:16 pm | Report abuse |
    • banasy©

      She missd it by two minutes, but she is safe and sound.
      Thanks for your concern.

      April 4, 2012 at 12:56 pm | Report abuse |
  9. rick

    Thanks to almighty GOD that no one lost their life. GOD has clearly shown HIS mercy during these extremely dangerous storms. There was no loss of life because is in complete control. Whatever door GOD opens no one can close, whatever door GOD closes no one can open. I love my LORD and SAVIOR CHRIST JESUS. John 3:16 says it all about GOD's love for everyone.

    April 4, 2012 at 12:07 pm | Report abuse |
    • Kent

      Does god have no mercy on those who died in Indiana recently? How do you rationalize that one?

      April 4, 2012 at 12:25 pm | Report abuse |
    • leeintulsa

      @rick: the reason no one was killed was because they knew what to do and did it, and thanks to newer technologies regarding early warnings, and a rewording of the standard tornado warning message – much more dire and scary than the norm.

      i realize there's no point arguing with you – you'd probably say something along the lines of god made all that possible, blah blah, blah.. guess dallas is more godly than joplin.

      my piece said. i praise the people who responded as well as they did.

      April 4, 2012 at 12:27 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mike

      Rick–I'm glad there is someone on this site like you. Everytime something bad happens the first thing people what to do is blame god but you did not. It could be weather,shooting,etc etc whatever it is. People need to open there eyes this is the world it's not perfect things happen. Life is not easy god said that or home is with him but till we are there we need to live or live's here. I know someone going to come behind me and make a dumb comment so where are you at atheists make your dumb comments you are not happy till you make your point.

      April 4, 2012 at 12:27 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Another miracle-

    A nursing home with 130 elderly in it was hit in Arlington, Tx. The roof was completely torn off one part. The part hit the worst was the part with the more mobile elderly in it. They were able to get into wheelchairs and into a safe part of the nursing home before the roof was blown off. The sections with bed bound patients was safe. No major injuries. What a blessing!

    April 4, 2012 at 12:15 pm | Report abuse |
    • JM

      God bless us one and all.

      April 4, 2012 at 12:23 pm | Report abuse |
    • Kent

      Not a blessing. "Timing" and "good luck" are more like what really happened.

      April 4, 2012 at 12:24 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Kent

    If it's as much a miracle that no one died, it's just as much a miracle that people died from tornados in Indiana recently. It's all "God's" work right? I'm sure he's using the word "miracle" loosely here. What he really means is "lucky." Any deity who discriminates is a crap deity.

    April 4, 2012 at 12:23 pm | Report abuse |
    • JM

      Really? We are all going to die. Any deity who creates paradise for us post-death is a merciful and kind deity.

      Anyone who rejects that kind gift is not particularly bright.

      April 4, 2012 at 12:24 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Kent

    @JM. No deity has created any sort of paradise for anyone. It's all man-made and anyone who accepts the promises of snake oil salemen without question is not particularly bright. That same deity supposedly created hell, too. Is that a merciful and kind deity? I think not!

    April 4, 2012 at 12:29 pm | Report abuse |
  13. elvisg

    Don't worry. God will unleash his share of tornadoes this season where people will die. He's just playing with your heads right now... Sicko...

    April 4, 2012 at 12:32 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mike

      elvisg-I knew we would get one of you people before to long. Blaming god have you stoped for a min thinking it's mother nature. So what I guessing from what you are saying there should not be anymore tornadoes,rain,fires,on and on and on. That's right the world is perfect. Think before you make a dumb comment. You type of people make me is all the time blaming god get a life.

      April 4, 2012 at 12:42 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Mr Spock

    There was no deity involved. It was my cross-circuiting to B.

    April 4, 2012 at 12:35 pm | Report abuse |
  15. someone in DFW

    We had good warning and great response. Businesses and schools all shuttled people to tornado safe areas in buildings. Thanks Channel 5 for the live coverage and telling us exactly where the funnels were!

    April 4, 2012 at 12:46 pm | Report abuse |
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