Texas Tornado Pictures Show Severe Damage to Parts of Onalaska, Polk County

A devestating twister struck eastern Texas on Wednesday evening, causing widespread damage across Onalaska, Polk County.

The latest information from Polk County Office of Emergency Management is that three people have died and between 20 and 30 people have been injured by the storms.

Judge Sydney Murphy has issued a Declaration of Disaster in Polk County in response to yesterday's storms as rescue efforts continue.

In the meantime, residents are being asked to avoid the area in order to prevent traffic congestion, which officials say could hinder search and rescue operations, and shelter has been established for people affected by the storm in Dunbar Gymnasium in Livingston.

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Residents of Jasper and Newton County who have been displaced are advised to dial 1-866-526-8300 the American Red Cross, who can help them find a place to stay.

According to the Polk County Office of Emergency Management, officials first started receiving reports of storm related damage at 6.11 p.m. CDT.

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The hardest hit regions were Yaupon Cove, Texas Acres, Canyon Park, Tree Farm Tracks, Kickapoo Estate, Triple Creek, Rocky Creek, Pine Harbor, Paradise Acres 1, 2 and 3, and Creekside.

Images shared online reveal the devastation wrought by the storm as it ripped through Onalaska last night, from downed power cables to collapsed buildings.

Jessica Willey, reporter for KTRK-TV, shared footage of upturned trees and downed power cables in Onalaska.

Twitter user and storm chaser Ian Shelton shared images of property damaged by fallen trees.

Mike Seidel, Meteorologist with The Weather Channel, shared a clip of severe property damage along the Trinity River, off Highway 356.

KPRC 2 shared more images of fallen trees and damaged property taken by Ian Shelton. This time in the Seven Oaks area in Polk County.

Travis Herzog, the chief meteorologist for ABC13 Houston, shared a video of a wedge tornado, so-named due to the wedge-like shape (upside-down triangle) of the storm.

"This is the monster that tore through #Onalaska & #SevenOaks as it cut a path of destruction through San Jacinto and Polk Counties."

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott released a statement Wednesday night in response to the disaster.

"My office, the Texas Division of Emergency Management, and other state agencies are working with local officials to provide immediate support to the areas devastated by this tornado," he said.

"The state has already deployed response teams and medical resources to help Texans in need and to provide assistance to these communities. Our hearts are with our fellow Texans tonight and the state will continue to do everything it can to support those affected by this severe weather."

Wedge shaped tornado
File photo: A tornado rages across rural southewestern Manitoba, Canada. A tornado ripped through parts of east Texas on April 22, 2020. Reed Timmer/Jim Reed Photography/Corbis/Getty
Texas Tornado Pictures Show Severe Damage to Parts of Onalaska, Polk County | U.S.