Residents And City Officials Assess Damages And Begin Cleanup After 4 Tornadoes
For many San Antonio area residents it’s been a day of giving thanks for the few injuries suffered when four tornadoes tore through the area Sunday night. No one was seriously hurt, but there was plenty of damage when winds of up to 110 miles per hour slammed into buildings and homes.
The San Antonio Fire Department alone reported 43 homes damaged, along with eight apartment buildings. Outside the city limits the country reported more destruction.
Sawing and hammering echo along Linda Drive on San Antonio’s North Side. Dozens of homes have been ransacked by a 105 mile per hour tornado that struck this neighborhood Sunday night.
Brandy Campos and her family has lived in this neighborhood since 1955.
“It sounded like there was jet airplane outside or train or something like that that. It was so loud,” she says.
Down the street, damaging wind ripped the roof from a yellow house Debris littered the front yard.
Resident Greg Goza says this house - where his mother in law lives - is no longer safe.
“We shouldn’t even be in here right now. The ceiling is still collapsing," Goza says.
Goza’s own home a few doors down was destroyed.
“The whole front part of my house just blew away. You could hear the pillars the rafters, you could hear everything,” he says.
Gloria and Manuel Garcia were also counting their blessings. The vicious wind ripped the back off their house. The family room now looks like a patio.
“And the shed is the neighbor’s yard. We had a storage shed. But anyway, it’s okay. Thank god we have insurance and friends helping us today.”
There are no damage estimates yet. Power has been restored to many who lost it, but not everyone. And its unclear what it will take for the homes of many to be repaired and liveable.
Just outside the city limits Bexar County deployed 50 emergency responders, heavy equipment for removing debris and a command center to organize a cleanup effort. Residents in the Glen & Camelot II neighborhoods were hit with an EF-0 rated tornado with winds of up to 70 miles per hour.
It traveled 1.6 miles. Residents are assessing the damage to their homes.
"We planted this 40 years ago when my dad first bought this house. This was nothing but dirt and we planted the trees, and there’s three of them out now. It’s horrible," Cook says.
Monica Ramos is the spokesperson for Bexar County. She says first responders, public works teams, and the fire and sheriff’s offices are all helping, but residents need to be aware of predatory practices. She says roofing and tree limb cutting companies have been driving by trying to sell their services to residents.
"Now while this might sound like a really positive way for people to get back on their feet, it can actually hurt homeowners because in most homeowner’s insurance policies, in order for a homeowner to file a claim, the insurance company has to assess the damage," Ramos says.
Sixty-seven homes in this area have been reported damaged so far. No injuries have been reported.