Dust, rain, high winds sweep across South Plains

Submitted by Donovan Martin
Submitted by Donovan Martin

LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) - After a day of high winds, heavy rain and blowing dust, the tornado warnings have expired for Dickens, Kent, and King County. The Tornado Watch that included most of the South Plains has been lifted, but Borden and Scurry were still under a flash flood watch going into Thursday night.

We're expecting more heavy thunderstorms Friday night with isolated thunderstorms expected through the weekend and most of next week.

Girard and Jayton hardest hit

The towns of Girard and Jayton, both about an hour and a half southeast of Lubbock, were hit hardest by severe weather on Thursday.

Winds as high as 92 miles per hour were reported in Jayton, knocking down trees and causing damage to a number of roofs.

KCBD Meteorologist Cary Allen was in the middle of it and saw the damage firsthand.

Cary says most of the damage was caused by straight line winds - damaging winds that come down to the ground, usually at the front of a thunderstorm. These winds are powerful enough to push buildings over and uproot trees.

Flooding in the area closed off roadways and prevented electric company crews from being able to repair downed power lines.

Howard Heath, the Emergency Management Coordinator for Kent County, said that around 600 people were without power in the area on Thursday afternoon.

"There were no homes that we've seen destroyed or anything completely stripped from the foundation or anything like that, but we do have a lot of roofs that are either all the way peeled back or partially peeled back - those type of things," Heath said.

Wall of dust hits Lubbock, Ralls and Dickens

Lubbock was spared the worst of the severe weather on Thursday but we still got hammered by a wall of dust. Visibility was reduced to about a mile. Some Lubbock residents suffered power outages caused by high winds. LP&L was still working to restore power to around 20 homes Thursday night. All repairs are complete as of Friday morning.

Winds reached 40 to 50 miles per hour around Ralls. In Dickens, visibility was down to zero.

The dust storm took about four hours to finally pass through.

No reports of serious damage in Lubbock County, but it did leave people with a nice orange glow.

We've got a slideshow of images from the storm available here.

You can see a list of current watches and warnings on our weather page here: http://www.kcbd.com/weather

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