Messy storms roll eastward after slamming Texas, Louisiana

A storm system marched eastward Friday, threatening heavy snow in the Midwest and Northeast after spawning likely tornadoes in Texas and Louisiana that damaged homes, a university campus and left thousands without power.

The storms will threaten the Tennessee and Ohio Valleys with tornadoes as they move toward New England, the Storm Prediction Center said. A swath of heavy snow is expected in the Upper Midwest through New England on Friday and Saturday, with sleet and freezing rain possible south of the heaviest snow.

No deaths or injuries have been reported from the storms that struck Texas and Louisiana on Thursday night after slamming California earlier in the week with as much as 7 feet of snow.

The National Weather Service in Fort Worth planned Friday to survey damage near Pickton, about 80 miles (130 kilometers) east of Dallas, where it said a confirmed tornado struck.

Winds of nearly 80 mph (130 kph) were recorded near the Dallas suburb of Blue Mound. The roof of an apartment building in the suburb of Hurst was blown away, resident Michael Roberts told KDFW-TV.

“The whole building started shaking. … The whole ceiling is gone,” Roberts said. “It got really crazy.”

Buildings at Louisiana State University-Shreveport were damaged, and trees were toppled, spokesperson Erin Smith, but the campus will reopen Friday after being shut down overnight.

Nearly 100,000 Texas customers lacked electricity and more than 11,000 in Louisiana on Friday morning, according to

Heavy rain was reported in northern Arkansas, where police in Hardy, about 115 miles (185 kilometers) north of Little Rock asked residents along the Spring River to leave their homes because of flooding while hail and strong winds were reported in Oklahoma.

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