North Texas Weather and Driving: What you Need to Know

Living in Texas and specifically, the DFW area, we are prone to violent and often times destructive weather. This can happen almost any month during the year, but when Fall rolls around the mixture of warmer rising air colliding with colder air is a prime atmosphere for generating torrential downpours and the ever dreaded…TORNADO!

There are a few things to know when stuck out in these conditions. I’ve been caught in 3 tornado conditions when driving and each was more terrifying than the rest. Kind of like this guy. This video was taken the weekend of October 24th, 2010.

According to cnn: Authorities in northeast Texas were assessing damage Monday morning after a tornado destroyed homes, knocked train cars off their tracks and injured at least four people.

Five homes in Rice, Texas, were destroyed as 125 mph winds whipped through a seven-mile swath of Navarro County Sunday evening, said Eric Meyers, the county’s emergency management coordinator.

Meyers rode out the tornado inside a vehicle and videotaped the twister as it tore the roof off a school about a block away.



“The sheer power was just amazing,” Meyers said in an interview Monday on CNN’s “American Morning” program.
If you are in your car, find shelter immediately.
Here are some of the things that people describe when they tell about a tornado experience:

  • A sickly greenish or greenish black color to the sky.
  • If there is a watch or warning posted, then the fall of hail should be considered as a real danger sign. Hail can be common in some areas, however, and usually has no tornadic activity along with it.
  • A strange quiet that occurs within or shortly after the thunderstorm.
  • Clouds moving by very fast, especially in a rotating pattern or converging toward one area of the sky.
  • A sound a little like a waterfall or rushing air at first, but turning into a roar as it comes closer. The sound of a tornado has been likened to that of both railroad trains and jets.
  • Debris dropping from the sky.
  • An obvious “funnel-shaped” cloud that is rotating, or debris such as branches or leaves being pulled upwards, even if no funnel cloud is visible.
If you see a tornado and it is not moving to the right or to the left relative to trees or power poles in the distance, it may be moving towards you! Remember that although tornadoes usually move from southwest to northeast, they also move towards the east, the southeast, the north, and even northwest.
Finally, if you are in a car, and you can see a tornado forming or approaching, you should leave the car and take shelter as above. You may think you can escape from the tornado by driving away from it, butyou can’t know what you may be driving into! A tornado can blow a car off a road, pick a car up and hurl it, or tumble a car over and over. Many people have been killed in cars while they were trying to outrun the tornado, and although it is sometimes possible to escape, it is generally not a good idea.
An underpass may seem like a safe place, but may not be. While videos show people surviving under an underpass, those tornadoes have been weak. No one knows how survivable an underpass is in a strong or violent tornado. The debris flying under the underpass could be very deadly… head for a ditch.
Also, if you have encountered any hail damage from a recent storm, bring it by and Freeman Grapevine will  help get those dings out.