Tornado ravished areas still in assessment stage

Published 7:30 am Wednesday, December 30, 2015

From staff reports

Eleven people, including an infant, were killed in Dallas and Collin counties, and as many as 11 tornadoes were reported to the National Weather Service.

The National Weather Service confirmed nine tornadoes Sunday night and said that number could rise in the coming days as more areas are surveyed.

A tornado that blew through Garland, Rowlett and Sunnyvale killing eight people Saturday night has been classified as an EF4, with winds up to 180 mph, according to the Weather Service. And a tornado that killed two people in Copeville has been classified as an EF2 with winds reaching 125 mph.

The tornadoes started as far south as Hillsboro and moved north toward Blue Ridge and northeast to Sulphur Springs according to The Dallas Morning News.

Donations and volunteers eager to assist the communities through this tragic time have been overwhelming to the area.

Early estimates suggested as many as 1,000 homes and buildings were damaged across Ellis, Dallas and Collin counties.

Gov. Greg Abbott asked Sunday afternoon that Texans remain vigilant, heed authorities instructions and stay off the roads. He said there is no official count of the number of storm fatalities statewide.

Donation centers in Rowlett and Garland were overflowing by Monday morning while areas such as Farmerssville, Copeville, and Lavon were still in need of assistance according to faceboook groups.

However, at this time the Farmersville Police Department issued a statement Monday morning: “The Farmersville Police Department would like to thank everyone who has offered to help, volunteer, or donate to storm victims. After talking with Collin County Homeland Security and other County officials, those who wish to donate are encouraged to contact the American Red Cross. During damage assessments and contact with those affected by the storm, specific needs and/or situations where help is needed or requested has been addressed or in process of being addressed. We will continue to monitor those affected by the storms and as needs arise, we will reach out through social media sites for assistance. Again, thank you for all the help and prayers for the Farmersville and surrounding community.”

To make a donation to the American Red Cross in the region affected by the tornados, call (214) 678-4800 or mail your donation to: American Red Cross of North Texas, 4800 Harry Hines Blvd, Dallas, TX 75235.