Warnings

Tornado slams town near Texas coast; reports of several injuries, damaged homes

The tornado flipped a mobile home in Van Vleck.

The tornado flipped a mobile home in Van Vleck.  (Fox 26)

A confirmed tornado destroyed at least one home and damaged more than a dozen others Tuesday in a Texas town near the Gulf of Mexico, according to the National Weather Service.

The twister in Van Vleck came amid a powerful storm system walloping much of the state. Fortunately, reported injuries were minor, Fox 26 reported.

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In Van Vleck, a town of about 1,800 people near the Texas coast, "Tops of trees are twisted off and at least one home is completely torn apart," Doug Matthes, emergency management coordinator for Matagorda County, told The Associated Press.

Paramedics rushed at least seven people to hospitals but they didn't appear to have serious injuries, he said.

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The National Weather Service's Houston/Galveston office claimed it was looking into reports of a tornado and damage near Rosenberg, along with a possible twister spotted over the Houston Ship Channel.

As many as 15 homes in Rosenberg suffered damage and one was destroyed, Fox 26 reported. The station noted some minor injuries there as well.

"There have been a number of spin-ups, gusty winds reported," Dan Reilly of the NWS told the Houston Chronicle. "We're kind of in the middle of it right now."

Tornado warnings across parts of the Houston area were lifted Thursday morning, as tornado watches remained through the early afternoon. Students and teachers sheltered in place inside schools in the affected areas.

Winds of around 50 mph were lashing Corpus Christi and other coastal regions. Driving rain also triggered a travel nightmare for drivers in Austin, Dallas, Houston and other parts of the state.

More than 3 inches of rain fell in some areas west of Austin, and rain was mixing with snow in the Texas Panhandle, resulting in slick roads and delays in school openings.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.