Exclusive Photos - Westminster, Texas Tornado
May 9, 2006
At approximately 10:20 PM on Tuesday, May 9, 2006 a high-end F3 tornado carrying winds of close to 200 MPH touched down about a mile north of the small Texas town of Westminster. Just 40 miles north of Dallas, this tornado killed an elderly couple and a teen-aged boy while injuring 11 others and destroying at least 11 homes. Below are both aerial and on-scene photos taken during the morning of May 10th.
Aerial Views of the Westminster area tornado aftermath
Note the brown path of destruction (above).
Here's a closer view .
This tornado was on the ground for about 4 miles.
Several homes appeared to be completely leveled.
The tornado had a 1/3 to 1/2 mile wide footprint which is consistent with F3's.
Trees suffered equal devistation.
Despite the horrific damage -
it would have been worse if it had hit nearby Westminster directly.
Closer view of the above scene.
Though the home on the left appears intact -
On closer examination it is probably a total loss.
This tornado was unusual as it struck well after dark.
It appears that anything and everything in the direct path was destroyed.
Another unusual thing abou this tornado
was the fact that it maintained contact with the ground
even as the elevation changed 40 feet or more.
Between the red lines - nothing was left undamaged.
The town of Westminster does not have a tornado warning siren...
...therefore, those who had gone to sleep early were caught unawares.
This grove of trees was as defenseless
as everything else in this tornado's path
One family found a 3-axel trailer (5,000 lbs?)
lying upside down in their yard...
... and had no idea where it came from!
Most of the water appears
to have been sucked out of this swimming pool.
In some places it looked like a bomb had exploded.
Small trees and shrubs were pulled out by the roots.
Grassy areas looked like they had been
flailed with a whip made of bits of wood.
This uprooted cedar tree traveled several hundred yards.
When nature acts like this...
... we can only look with awe.
These fence posts were the only man-made items to survive intact.
Looking on these scenes...
can only make one feel grateful that they were not here...
... while this was taking place.
This is a Honda Accord motor
The rest of the car is
wrapped around a tree..
Even homes not totally destroyed
experienced severe damage.
The garage did little
to protect the light blue auto.
Sometimes nature can be unmerciful.
Our thoughts and prayers...
to those who lost loved ones.