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Eagle Pass (Maverick County) - EF3

April 24, 2007

By Marlene Bradford
The residents of Eagle Pass had no warning that a tornado was approaching around 7:00 on the evening of April 24, 2007. The town of twenty-six thousand residents about 150 miles southwest of San Antonio on the Mexican border had no siren system and no television station. Managers of the cable provider and the largest Spanish language radio station in town said that they never received the two tornado warnings that the National Weather Service Office in New Braunsfel issued that evening.

The storm struck Piedras Negras on the Mexican side of the Rio Grande then rolled into the Rosita Valley community of Eagle Pass. Winds estimated at eighty to one hundred miles per hour and golf ball-size hail preceded the twister. Ricardo Tijenna said he saw the clouds rolling in but thought it was just a typical spring storm. He and his six children escaped by huddling together under a bed in their house near the center of the damage. Some of his neighbors were not as fortunate. A family of five, including a five-year-old child, died when the tornado flung their mobile home into the Rosita Valley Elementary School. Two others died when their houses collapsed around them. The tornado destroyed the elementary school, two churches, and eighty homes. Seventy-six homes were heavily damaged. The National Weather Service rated the tornado an EF3 with winds estimated between 135 and 165 miles per hour.


© Marlene Bradford
May 8 , 2015 guest column
See Texas Tornadoes: The Lone Star State’s Deadliest Twisters

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