ANGELINA COUNTY, TX (KTRE) - Work crews with Angelina County Precinct 1 spent their day Monday in the Allentown community clearing roads that still had damage from Sunday's strong storms that were widespread across East Texas.
"We have a lot of damage out here," said Commissioner Greg Harrison. "We have three roads up here with trees all down on them. This one road we are on had 40 trees knocked down. That is just what is down on the roadway. There are still trees down on private property. Some homes had trees fall and barely miss the homes. I would say the people are lucky out here."
The same area got hit with a tornado 26 years ago. James Burns and his wife lived in the community during the tornado, and he said this was not the same.
"I do believe it is straight line winds," Burns said. "It was not the howling noise you get with tornadoes. I have been in them. This was different. I was under the carport when it happened yesterday. The wind was blowing hard. The tin was blowing. I just stayed there with my wife and dogs in the house because I was scared I would get hit if I ran to get inside."
The damage is easily noticeable.
"Part of my barn is out there in my pond," Burns said. "My flat bottom boat is upside down. Window blowed out on my shop. Got some damage on the roof up there on the shingles. Got some big ol' pecan tree limbs hanging down up there."
Just down the road, the sound of chainsaws let Burns know he was not alone. Lynn Sitterding lives in a wood home behind her 92 year-old mother's. The driveway was once lined with trees, but now the trees are gone. Nine of them were toppled by the strong winds.
"There was a loud screeching noise, and I opened my door and looked and saw all the trees laying at a 45-degree angle, and I said, 'I got to go,'" Sitterding said. "We were lucky that the house only had damage to the small deck and the air conditioner."
Harrison said it could be several days for the clean up to finish for the residents. Harrison thanked the residents who used their farm tractors to help start the clean up Sunday afternoon.
Burns, a retired truck driver, is just hoping this is the last major storm of the year.
"It's pretty tough out there," Burns said. "I would've hate to be on the road in an 18-wheeler."
Sitterding is counting her blessings today.
"We are lucky," Sitterding said. "For some reason, these storms follow the road, and that's where all the people and the trees are."