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Tornadoes, Heavy Rain Punish East Texas, Louisiana

December 07, 1987|From Times Wire Services

Tornadoes and heavy rain hit East Texas on Sunday, destroying houses and downing power lines but causing no injuries, authorities said. The tornadoes touched down in the same area where a rash of twisters three weeks ago killed nine people.

Dispatcher Troy Freeman of the Anderson County Sheriff's Department said a tornado was reported about 12 miles south of Palestine.

"We've had about six houses destroyed, some barns blown away and power lines and trees down, but no injuries," Freeman said.

Damage to Farms, Homes

Palestine suffered severe tornado damage in mid-November but was untouched Sunday. The damage was reported to farms and homes in the southern part of the county, Freeman said.

Two tornadoes also touched down in Polk County, about 75 miles to the southeast, inflicting heavy property damage in the community of Seven Oaks.

"The Seven Oaks city marshal indicated that houses and mobile homes were blown away--those were his words," Polk County sheriff's Sgt. Darrall Longino said. He said he did not know the number of homes damaged.

Meanwhile, thunderstorms produced flash flooding in parts of northeast Texas, northwest Louisiana and southwest Arkansas. More than four inches of rain fell in North Longview, Tex., and nearly four inches fell at Texarkana, Ark. A flood and flash-flood watch was posted over extreme southeast Texas.

The twisters were produced by an unstable low-pressure system, which also was responsible for two reported tornadoes in southwest Louisiana, the National Weather Service said.

The first Louisiana twister hit early Sunday afternoon near a wildlife refuge, causing no damage. The second touched down 15 minutes later, 15 miles away in an area west of Lake Charles, destroying one travel trailer, ripping the roof off a mobile home and moving several others off their foundations.

In the upper Mississippi Valley, snow fell in parts of Wisconsin and Minnesota and advisories for snow were posted for parts of the two states.

Bemidji Gets Snow

In Minnesota, seven inches of snow fell during the morning at Grand Rapids and Aitkin, six inches fell at Walker and Brainerd and Bemidji got four inches. In Wisconsin, two inches fell at Rice Lake with three inches reported west of Rice Lake near the Minnesota border.

Meanwhile, a Pacific storm triggered a cold front with heavy precipitation and strong winds across western Washington and western Oregon, the National Weather Service said. More than two inches of rain fell early Sunday at North Bend, Ore.

Gale warnings were posted for the coasts of both states.

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