NWS sending more survey teams to Deep East Texas following fatal storms

Houston County Tornadoes

EAST TEXAS (KLTV/KTRE) - The National Weather Service will be releasing more information on the deadly tornadoes that ravaged parts of East Texas on Saturday.

Monday, NWS crews will be surveying areas from eastern Nacogdoches County, San Augustine County and Sabine County.

NWS Shreveport said on Monday night that they found evidence of a fifth tornado from Saturday’s storms. This one was an EF-1 and was located southwest Chireno.

The NWS Shreveport office had confirmed Sunday that four tornadoes struck East Texas during Saturday’s storms. They reported an EF-2 and an EF-3 passed through Cherokee County, causing significant damage to the city of Alto and surrounding areas.

The EF-3 started in Houston County, causing damage to the Weches community, before moving into Cherokee County and damaging the city of Alto. It then moved into Rusk County where it lifted.

It is estimated 150 structures were damaged while 25 where destroyed completely.

Two other tornadoes, EF-2, and EF-1, also reportedly touched down in Houston County, according to NWS Houston office.

Tornado damage in Houston County

Donations/Aid

In Alto, a shelter has been set up at The River Church and the Red Cross is providing assistance to residents in need. Contact the Red Cross at 1-800-RED-CROSS or 1-800-733-2767.

The church is located at 595 S. Marcus St./Highway 69 South.

The Cherokee County Emergency Management team is setting up an agricultural drop point across from Alto City Hall. People can donate things such as fencing supplies, barbed wire, fencing panels, fencing pliers, staples, hammers, t-posts among other things.

Questions about the “agricultural” drop point can be referred to Aaron Low at 903-683-5416.

Donations are being accepted at the Alto Missionary Baptist Church, 107 Elkhart St. in Alto. Toiletries, clothing and personal care items are being requested.

A Nacogdoches doctor is offering free medical treatment to tornado victims, according to Alto Police Chief Jeremy Jackson. Some requirements will have to be met before treatment is conducted. People in need of that service should contact Jackson at Alto City Hall. That phone number is (936) 858-4711.

Lovelady ISD posted they are asking for donations for two Lovelady families affected by yesterday’s storm and another family that lost their house to a fire. They said they will be accepting donations at the high school and elementary Monday through Thursday. Items can be left at the front offices and we will sort and deliver items.

The City of Bullard, Bullard Rotary Club and Bullard Chamber will be gathering and accepting donations at Bullard City Hall. They are asking for donations such as trash bags, hand sanitizer, baby diapers and toilet paper.

Academy Sports and Outdoors on Broadway in Tyler will be accepting donations for victims of the storms in Alto Tuesday from 8:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.

Alto City Hall also posted information for anyone who would like to make a monetary donation.

The city says any monetary donations can be made at BancorpSouth in Alto. The fund is labeled “Alto Relief Fund” and the number is (936) 858-4416.

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Fatalities

Four storm-related deaths were reported in at least three different counties.

Two children were killed Pollock when a tree fell on the vehicle they were riding in. Houston County officials also reported a woman was found dead yards away from her destroyed home. And in Cherokee County, a woman who was flown from the scene at Caddo Mounds State Historic Site reportedly succumbed to her injuries on Sunday.

WEBXTRA: Alto storm damage

Clean up efforts

Cleanup efforts following the deadly storms are continuing on Monday.

Cherokee County Judge Christ Davis signed an disaster declaration Saturday night. Davis said their top priority is making sure residents are safe.

The State of Texas Department of Emergency Management also deployed a strike team from Smith County Emergency Services District No. 2 to assist withe the search and recovery efforts in Alto.

Crews are continuing to clear areas of State Highway 21 East and FM 227 in Houston County. TxDOT asks motorists to not stop or exit their vehicles in those areas and to be alert when driving in the area.

Outages and notices

Multiple school districts have made the decision to cancel classes on Monday following the destructive storms.

A boil water notice is in effect for residents along FM 757 in Alto.

Multiple areas are still without power as of Monday morning:

  • Oncor is reporting 258 customers are without power in the Alto area. About 25 are without power near Lufin and 25 are still without power near the Nacogdoches area.
  • The Houston County Electric Cooperative is reporting 677 customers are still without power.
  • Swepco is reporting 21 customers are without power just south of Longview.

Check power outage maps for your area

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To help the victims of these storms, click here to donate to either the American Red Cross or the East Texas Food Bank. Both agencies are working daily in these storm-impacted areas of East Texas.

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