Reports: Large tornadoes touch down in Oklahoma, Kansas as severe storm outbreak unfolds

By Kevin Byrne, AccuWeather staff writer
By Brian Lada, AccuWeather meteorologist and staff writer
May 19, 2017, 4:22:51 AM EDT

As of 3:15 a.m. CDT Friday, this story is no longer being updated.

Areas from Texas to Missouri will face the risk of violent tornadoes, along with other threats such as damaging winds, large hail and flash flooding, into Friday morning.

Cities in the severe threat area include Dallas and Abiliene, Texas; Tulsa and Oklahoma City, Oklahoma; Kansas City, Missouri, and Little Rock, Arkansas.

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As of 2:00 a.m. CDT Friday, a house sustained significant roof damage after a tree was blown onto the home in Chadwick, Missouri. There was a tornado warning in the area at the time, but no tornado has yet been confirmed. The storm that blew through the town continues to push eastward across southern Missouri at 40 mph.

As of 1:30 a.m. CDT Friday, an emergency manager reports that one person sustained a head injury after shingles were blown off the Camden Hotel near Branson, Missouri. 

As of 10:50 p.m. CDT Thursday, local media reports that cars are flipped over and a gas station has sustained damage in Wagoner, Oklahoma. The town was under a tornado warning during this time, but no tornado has been confirmed.

As of 10:04 p.m. CDT Thursday, a wind gust of 78 mph has been reported in De Soto, Kansas, according to a trained spotter. This is as high as a category 1 hurricane, which can have wind gusts between 74 to 95 mph. Multiple trees and power lines have been damaged due to the high winds. 

As of 9:30 p.m. CDT Thursday, large hail is being reported throughout the western suburbs of Kansas City, Missouri. The hail has ranged anywhere in size from quarters to tennis balls. 

Severe thunderstorms are approaching Kansas City and may bring small hail and frequent lightning. The storms may also disrupt the Kansas City Royals game.

A confirmed tornado was located just south of Rising Star, Texas at 8:04 p.m. CDT Thursday. This nearly-stationary supercell thunderstorm has also produced tennis ball-sized hail and damaging wind gusts that have brought down power poles and large trees.

rising star supercell

At 7:19 p.m. CDT Thursday, a severe thunderstorm capable of producing a tornado was located near Dacoma, Oklahoma and was moving east toward Cherokee. This storm has already produced strong winds with a 77 mph wind gust recorded near Avard, according to Mesonet.

Damage has been reported around Cordell, Oklahoma where a tornado touched down earlier today. There have not been any reports of serious injuries from this thunderstorm.

Cordell damage 1

Storm damage from a possible tornado in Cordell, Oklahoma. (Photo/Twitter user @cordellfire1)

Cordell damage 2

Storm damage from a possible tornado in Cordell, Oklahoma. (Photo/Twitter user @cordellfire1)

At 6:15 p.m. CDT Thursday, a 104 mph wind gust was measured near Walters, Oklahoma, located north of Wichita Falls, Texas. The thunderstorm that produced this wind gust was also responsible for golf ball-sized hail and may also spin up a tornado.

Tennis ball-sized hail and wind damage has been reported north of Coleman, Texas due to a slow-moving severe thunderstorm. This storm is also capable of producing a tornado and is slowly moving to the northeast.

coleman tx 7pm

Severe thunderstorms may impact travel along interstate 70 in Kansas between Kansas City and Hays over the next several hours. Motorists should expect delays as storms lead to decreased visibility and gusty winds.

Severe weather has escalated across south-central Kansas over the past hour with multiple thunderstorms producing tornadoes. This includes a tornado that tracked near Great Bend, Kansas and a thunderstorm that tracked near Larned, Kansas. A line of thunderstorms also produced wind gusts of 70 mph around Pratt, Kansas.

As of 5:30 p.m. CDT Thursday, two thunderstorms south of Dodge City were capable of producing tornadoes.

kansas radar 6:30 may 18

At 5:06 p.m. CDT Thursday, a large and extremely dangerous tornado was tracking toward Waynoka, Oklahoma. This was a particularly dangerous situation. People in the path of this storm need to take shelter immediately.

tornado waynoka seiling

A tornado located between Waynoke and Seiling, Oklahoma on Thursday afternoon. (Photo/Amanda Murphy)

waynoka ok tornado

A tornado just south of Waynoka, Oklahoma on Thursday afternoon. (Photo/Thomas Giebel)

AccuWeather Extreme Meteorologist Reed Timmer intercepted this tornado just south of Weatherford, Oklahoma.

A thunderstorm with a history of producing a tornado is tracking over Cordell, Oklahoma. This is the second tornado-warned storm to track near the town this afternoon. A trained spotter in the town has reported that the storm has also produced hail larger than golf balls.

cordell may 18 radar

At 4:16 p.m. CDT Thursday, a tornado was located near Seiling, Oklahoma, and was heading toward Chester. Several storm chasers in the area confirmed that this tornado was on the ground just west of the town.

The National Weather Service has called this a 'significant tornado' as it has grown in size since touching down.

Meanwhile, severe thunderstorms are breaking out across south-central Kansas with some already producing quarter-sized hail. One storm near Great Bend, Kansas also produced a brief tornado.

At 3:45 p.m. CDT Thursday, a confirmed tornado was located near Cloud Chief, Oklahoma, and was moving toward Colony.

Meanwhile in Texas, another powerful storm capable of producing a tornado is located near Thalia, and was moving to the east. Lockett and Vernon, Texas may also experience blinding downpours and hail larger than ping pong balls as the storm moves overhead.

Another particularly dangerous situation tornado watch has been issued for southern and central Kansas. This includes Wichita and Dodge City, Kansas.

Elk City, Oklahoma is being hit by a severe thunderstorm just days after being devastated by a tornado. As of 2:30 p.m. CDT Thursday, the storm was not capable of producing a tornado, but this may change as the storm strengthens.

At 2:05 p.m. CDT Thursday, a confirmed tornado was located near Duke, Oklahoma, and was moving to the northeast toward Hester and Mangum. People in the path of this storm should seek shelter immediately.

tornado radar duke 2pm

The weather radar at the time that the tornado was confirmed near Duke, Oklahoma.

The first severe thunderstorms of the day are developing across parts of Oklahoma and Texas.

At 1:15 p.m. CDT Thursday, the National Weather Serviced issued a particularly dangerous situation (PDS) tornado watch, saying that thunderstorms that develop in this area may produce intense tornadoes, very large hail and wind gusts past 80 mph.

radar 3pm may 18

It is important that people in this part of the country pay close attention to the weather today as severe storms may develop with little warning. The National Weather Service is telling people to check the weather before leaving places like work or school to make sure that you are not caught in a storm with no place to seek shelter.

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