Tornadoes hit Colorado, Minnesota

By Sean Morris and Steve Almasy, CNN

A line of widely scattered strong storms brought tornadoes to Colorado and Minnesota on Thursday and damaging high winds as far south as Texas.

minnesotatornadoThree tornadoes stuck Minnesota. One hit near rural St. James. Kholby Martin, a storm chaser with KDR Media, said it was a couple of hundred yards wide but it wasn’t fully condensed.

Officials said no one was hurt, nor was there any structural damage.

Two tornadoes touched down in Colorado.

There was still a possibility of tornadoes in south central Minnesota and central Iowa on Thursday night.

Dallas County in Texas saw an hourlong tornado warning Thursday afternoon as the system moved through, bringing winds of up to 70 mph, the National Weather Service said. Students at Southern Methodist University were told to shelter in place.

That was followed by a flash flood warning for several counties in the area through the early evening hours.

CNN affiliate WFAA reported that five boys were rescued from a creek after fast-moving waters moved in. Emergency responders found the boys clinging to whatever they could find along the shore, the station said.

There was wind damage around the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex. In one neighborhood in west Dallas, residents told WFAA that when the storm hit they saw debris flying through the air and heard transformers popping.

Deborah Drake came home to find the glass in an entrance door to her home shattered by some of that debris.

“You just heard this noise (like a train whistle) then it just shook the house,” said a neighbor who was helping her clean up broken glass. “I ran in the bathroom and got in the bathtub.”

Some areas of South Dakota near Harrisburg were pelted by quarter-size hail, according to the National Weather Service in Sioux Falls. Winds were blowing as fast as 50 mph.

On Friday, strong storms will probably strike from Arkansas to Indiana, with rain in the Midwest, South and Northeast as the system moves east. That blustery, wet weather could affect as many as 14 million people, CNN meteorologist Sherri Pugh said. Saturday should bring more rain for those areas, too.

Mobile, Alabama, and Pensacola, Florida, will also get wet as 1 to 3 inches of rain is forecast. The area has been dealing with recent heavy rains, so the risk is high in those areas for flash flooding, and there’s been a flash flood watch issued.

Tired of reading about rain? Sorry, there’s more.

Rain will begin drenching the Pacific Northwest on Thursday, with the system moving to the Northern Rockies on Friday and Saturday.

TM & © 2014 Cable News Network, Inc., a Time Warner Company. All rights reserved.

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