At least 1 killed as storms and winds knock out power across Texas communities and flood roadways

At least one person has been killed and more than 600,000 customers in Texas remained without power Tuesday night as powerful storms delivered another round of violent weather to a state still reeling from an almost unrelenting parade of destructive and deadly storms in recent weeks.

Storms unloaded hurricane-force wind gusts across the Dallas area Tuesday and later tore through Houston in the afternoon, where the city’s George Bush Intercontinental Airport recorded a wind gust of 75 mph.

Roughly 40 miles northwest of Houston, one person died after a house under construction collapsed in a subdivision in Magnolia, the city’s fire officials said. The victim – described as a “juvenile male” by the Magnolia Fire Department – was removed from a debris pile by firefighters and pronounced dead.

Magnolia Fire Department Division Chief Jason Herrman confirmed to CNN the home’s collapse was related to a Tuesday thunderstorm with “significant winds.”

Videos captured across Houston and Dallas communities revealed scenes of disaster and flooding Tuesday. Footage from north Dallas obtained by CNN showed multiple cars stranded in a flooded roadway, surrounded by frequent lightning as the rain continued. In other communities, powerful winds ripped out trees and forced them onto homes and knocked down neighborhood fences, leaving communities in disarray.

Multiple vehicles were stranded in flood waters in North Dallas Tuesday. - Michael Beard/LSM
Multiple vehicles were stranded in flood waters in North Dallas Tuesday. - Michael Beard/LSM

The power outages started to ramp up early Tuesday morning in the Dallas area, then extended south with the storms as they roared across the state, according to Hundreds of thousands of outages were in Dallas County, where officials issued a disaster declaration and warned outages could last for days.

READ: White House announcing action to modernize electric grid and pave the way for fewer outages

These storms have arrived even as some residents are still mourning at least seven people killed in the state during violent storms over Memorial Day weekend. In total, at least two dozen people, including four children, were killed across six states as storms hit the central US over the holiday period, and several communities are grappling with significant losses of homes and businesses.

Sunday was the busiest severe weather day of the year so far, with more than 600 reports of strong winds or hail across more than 20 states, including gusts over 75 mph and hail the size of softballs. Twenty-six tornado reports also were made in 10 states. Storms turned homes and businesses into piles of rubble, flung cars and brought down power lines.

Parts of Texas and extreme western Louisiana faced Tuesday’s most serious threat of severe weather. Large hail, lightning and wind gusts as strong as 80 mph were the main threats with any storm. A few tornadoes were also possible, according to the National Weather Service.

The weather also spelled misery for hundreds of travelers. More than 600 flights flying in and out of the Dallas Fort Worth International Airport and the Dallas Love Field Airport have been canceled – and more than 900 flights in and out of the two airports have been delayed, according to FlightAware data.

More than 75 flights in and out of Houston’s William P. Hobby Airport and George Bush Intercontinental Airport have been canceled, while more than 530 have been delayed.

Power outages could last days in Dallas

It could take days to fully restore power in the Dallas-Fort Worth area after violent storms unleashed hurricane-force wind gusts Tuesday morning. Dallas is the second major Texas city to have critical power infrastructure damaged by severe weather in less than two weeks.

“This, unfortunately, will be a multi-day power outage situation, similar to the one that (occurred) in Harris County and Houston,” Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins cautioned during a news conference Tuesday.

A derecho and tornado in mid-May blasted 100 mph wind gusts through the Houston metro, killing multiple people and knocking out power for days.

Storm damage is seen in the Dallas-Fort Worth, Texas, area on May 28, 2024. - KTVT
Storm damage is seen in the Dallas-Fort Worth, Texas, area on May 28, 2024. - KTVT

The full extent of damage to power infrastructure in the Dallas area is still being assessed, but the current prognosis is concerning, according to Grant Cruise, a spokesperson for Oncor — the state’s largest utility company.

“We did have a significant number of downed lines because of this weather event,” Cruise said during Tuesday’s news conference. “In many cases it’s not going to be simple repairs, we’re looking at complete reconstruction for parts of our area.”

The storm damage prompted Jenkins to issue a disaster declaration for Dallas County.

The outages come as some Texans head to the polls Tuesday for primary runoff elections. More than a third of Dallas County’s polling places were without power Tuesday afternoon, according to Jenkins.

Summerlike heat will ease in Texas this week, but those left without power or a reliable way to cool down could still face the risk of dangerous heat stroke or heat exhaustion.

CNN’s Raja Razek, Gene Norman and and Andy Rose contributed to this report.

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