Wednesday, January 17, 2018
Tampa Bay Weather

Severe storms sock Midwest, South

ST. LOUIS — A band of severe weather stretched across a swath of the Midwest and South on Thursday, with hailstorms in Texas, Oklahoma and Arkansas following a small tornado in suburban St. Louis.

Storms slammed the North Texas college city of Denton with hail as large as baseballs, leading to reports of broken windows and other damage.

The National Weather Service in Tulsa noted reports of hail up to the size of pingpong balls and strong wind gusts.

Arkansas saw 1-inch hail, and falling tree limbs knocked out power in western parts of the state.

Forecasters said the unsettled weather could spawn other tornadoes later Thursday, notably in southern Missouri, southern Illinois, Arkansas, and western portions of Kentucky.

Tornadoes, hail and winds in some cases gusting to 75 mph were possible as part of the storm.

No injuries resulted from the twister that hit University City, just west of St. Louis, shortly before 5:30 a.m., damaging about 100 homes in winds that reached up to 110 mph, National Weather Service meteorologist Jayson Gosselin said.

That system also carried heavy rain — up to 5 inches in parts of Missouri, prompting flash flooding that damaged dozens of homes and forced at least two water rescues.

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