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Record-Setting Hail Leaves Broken Glass And Damage In Its Wake

People in San Antonio have been cleaning up damage left behind by strong thunderstorms that moved across the area Tuesday night.
 
Cory Van Pelt with the National Weather Service says there was some record size hail in one of the storms.

“It was a really strong thunderstorm that came through the north side of San Antonio. It produced the largest hail size we saw, that was reported was three and a half inches, which is baseball size – a little bit bigger. It’s one of the largest hail storms we have on record in San Antonio.”

 
The largest hail on record was four and half inches recorded in Dec. 2002.

People all across the area are dealing with broken windows on cars and homes. Van Pelt says San Antonio doesn't usually get storms with large hail.
 
“These extreme events happen more toward the border down southwest of San Antonio. But in San Antonio itself, it’s pretty rare. So, it’s a pretty big deal.”bit bigger. It’s one of the largest hail storms we have on record in San Antonio.”

 
Insurance companies are dealing with thousands of claims and urging people to be patient.

At Parc and Wall Street Apartment Homes, many residents felt the force of pelting hail Monday night. Over 300 apartment windows have been broken and many vehicles on the property have been damaged. Sarah Rubio’s 2010 Honda Accord is one of them.

"As soon as I saw hail the size of golf balls, I was like something is going to happen to my car. My front windshield just got a minor crack, but my back windshield is all out," Sarah Rubio says.

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But from her perspective, it’s not all bad. She’s a student at UTSA and say’s she’s happy to have the day off school, and was even more excited to see her first hail storm.

Sarah Rubio’s older sister, Erica Rubio, lives with Sarah. Erica’s 2013 Mazda 6 wasn’t spared either.

"I just got some basic windshield damage. It looks like spider webs out here in the front, and I have a lot of dents all over my car," Erica Rubio says.

The elder Rubio sees the silver lining in the situation too. She says that many of her neighbors came out after the storm was over to assess the damage to their cars. They helped each other out, giving insurance advice or some lending shower curtains to patch up missing windshields.

"That was really awesome and I was really surprised and it kind of formed a better camaraderie here, because we know our neighbors, but not as well as we got to last night. Now I feel like I’m getting to know them much better," Erica Rubio says.

A silver lining to a hail storm. Businesses weren’t spared either. Cars at BMW of San Antonio had broken windshields, sunroofs, and dented bodies, and managers are contacting owners who had vehicles in the lot. 

Van Pelt, of the National Weather Service, says the damage was widespread.

"We got a lot of vehicle damage, large dents in cars, windows broken out. We got some homes, businesses with windows broken out. We saw some videos of skylights and some grocery stores that were knocked out and rain water was allowed to fall inside because those were blown out. Just a lot of property damage," he says.

Aaron Wilkerson with the Texas Farm Bureau says if your property’s damaged, now’s the time to pick up the phone.

"You have to prioritize by triage, but we encourage early reporting, because right now we’re focused on getting people to the areas to help," he says.