2 children killed as storms lash Texas

A tornado ripped through Franklin, Texas, as the National Weather Service in the state posted one tornado warning after another. CNN's Ivan Cabrera reports on the potential threats and paths of the storms.

Posted: Apr 14, 2019 2:40 PM
Updated: Apr 14, 2019 2:40 PM

Storms hammered east Texas on Saturday, with two children killed when a tree fell on a car, authorities said.

The children, ages 3 and 8, were in the back seat with their parents in the front when the tree fell on their vehicle around 3 p.m., said Angelina County Sheriff's Department Captain Alton Lenderman. The children were pronounced dead at the scene.

A preliminary damage survey found that a tornado with peak intensity of EF-3 and winds up to 140 mph touched down in Robertson County, according to a tweet from the National Weather Service in Forth Worth.

There were reports of multiple injuries in the Robertson County town of Franklin, the NWS said, and CNN affiliate KWTX reported widespread damage there. Trees were pulled up by the roots, roofs torn off buildings, and the cinder block foundation was all that was left of a mobile home in the town, which is southeast of Waco.

The entire town of Franklin and neighboring Bremond lost electricity, with power expected to be restored Saturday night.

To the north, dime-sized hail pounded the Dallas-Fort Worth area.

Texas is seeing the beginning of the dangerous and severe storms forecast to slam parts of the Southeast and Ohio River Valley this weekend.

The powerful system will create the potential for life-threatening winds, strong tornadoes and large hail.

The Storm Prediction Center has issued a moderate risk (level 4 out of 5) for severe weather Saturday across parts of the Lower Mississippi Valley.

And Sunday, an enhanced risk (level 3 out of 5) stretches from Atlanta to Cleveland.

4 tornado safety tips that could save your life

Severe storms possible from Texas to Mississippi

Track the storms with CNN's storm tracker

CNN meteorologist Chad Myers said the warm air present during the afternoon enhanced the atmosphere's instability, creating more energy for storms to tap into and aiding in their development.

He said the threat for severe weather is greatest at such times.

The storms most capable of producing tornadoes and large hail will be the individual, rotating cells that form ahead of a larger complex of thunderstorms.

Tornadoes possible overnight in Alabama

By late Saturday, the storms were expected to organize into a line as they cross the western border of Mississippi.

The system will begin to move through Alabama overnight and is expected to reach Georgia by Sunday morning.

The energy from warm afternoon temperatures will diminish, but the risk for tornadoes will not be over.

"The storm is so vigorous that tornadoes are still possible after dark," Myers said.

Tornadoes at that time can be especially dangerous since they are difficult to see and people are less likely to receive warnings while they're asleep.

Georgia, the southern Appalachians and Ohio Valley

The most significant risk of severe weather is expected Saturday, but there's still considerable potential Sunday.

The Storm Prediction Center issued an enhanced risk across a broad area, stretching from eastern Alabama through the southern Appalachians and into the Ohio Valley. The main line of storms will begin to push into this area late Sunday morning and trek to the east on Sunday afternoon. The center said it expects the threat of severe weather to increase throughout the afternoon.

"Damaging winds appear to be the greatest threat on Sunday, but tornadoes will also be possible," CNN meteorologist Dave Hennen said.

The risk will slowly diminish as the system begins to weaken Sunday evening.

Sunday tee times moved up at The Masters

Georgia's Augusta National Golf Club is included in the slight risk area Sunday as the Masters golf tournament concludes. Tournament organizers have moved up tee times for Sunday because of the storm threat.

The storms are expected to move through the Augusta area during the afternoon and evening.

The tornado threat will be lower by then, but damaging winds could still present hazardous conditions.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 61125

Reported Deaths: 1711
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Hinds5209106
DeSoto328027
Madison228154
Rankin212428
Harrison209832
Jackson192934
Jones176557
Forrest163153
Washington148032
Lauderdale132388
Lee123230
Neshoba119487
Lamar111512
Oktibbeha105235
Lowndes97332
Warren96426
Scott95317
Bolivar93932
Copiah90924
Panola90711
Sunflower90622
Lafayette8699
Holmes84347
Leflore83259
Pike82632
Grenada81220
Yazoo77311
Leake76725
Lincoln74339
Wayne73221
Pontotoc7247
Simpson71126
Monroe69750
Coahoma65910
Tate64523
Marion59918
Adams58025
Covington57811
Winston57115
Marshall5668
George5415
Union51913
Newton51611
Attala49524
Tallahatchie49310
Pearl River48236
Walthall44218
Chickasaw43519
Noxubee41710
Claiborne40013
Smith37713
Jasper3758
Calhoun3748
Clay36814
Alcorn3544
Prentiss3376
Hancock32614
Tishomingo3163
Yalobusha31610
Lawrence3135
Itawamba30710
Tippah30412
Clarke29825
Montgomery2913
Humphreys26911
Tunica2656
Carroll24511
Greene22611
Kemper22315
Perry2217
Quitman2211
Amite2105
Jefferson Davis1986
Webster19712
Jefferson1916
Wilkinson18712
Sharkey1801
Stone1483
Choctaw1264
Benton1240
Franklin1142
Issaquena211
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Confirmed Cases: 89927

Reported Deaths: 1580
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Jefferson11650225
Mobile8998191
Montgomery6198143
Madison493225
Tuscaloosa391263
Baldwin317522
Shelby300232
Marshall294730
Unassigned263351
Lee249140
Morgan220615
Etowah191425
DeKalb167713
Elmore158437
Calhoun15359
Walker145763
Houston130912
Dallas128023
Russell12201
Franklin118420
Limestone118313
St. Clair118212
Cullman111311
Colbert107612
Lauderdale105312
Autauga101020
Escambia96515
Talladega89013
Jackson8163
Chambers81438
Tallapoosa80478
Dale77619
Butler75135
Blount7223
Covington70420
Coffee7035
Chilton6976
Pike6547
Barbour5625
Lowndes54624
Marion53524
Marengo51514
Clarke4849
Hale44925
Bullock43711
Perry4284
Winston42811
Wilcox4029
Monroe3884
Randolph38810
Conecuh37110
Bibb3643
Pickens3639
Sumter36118
Washington31011
Macon30813
Lawrence3060
Crenshaw2843
Choctaw27312
Henry2433
Greene24011
Cherokee2337
Geneva2260
Clay2165
Lamar1942
Fayette1695
Cleburne1141
Coosa902
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