Houston dodges severe weather Monday

Chickasaw County residents crowd into the storm shelters on Harrington Street Monday as violent weather swept the county. Storm shelters around the county were packed to capacity. (Floyd Ingram / Buy at photos.chickasawjournal.com)

Chickasaw County residents crowd into the storm shelters on Harrington Street Monday as violent weather swept the county. Storm shelters around the county were packed to capacity.
(Floyd Ingram / Buy at photos.chickasawjournal.com)

HOUSTON – The funnel cloud spotted in the sky northwest of Houlka apparently moved on to Tupelo Monday and Chickasaw County was spared from any injury or major damage.
A strong storm system moved through Northeast Mississippi Monday afternoon sparking a series of tornado warnings in Chickasaw County, but there is no evidence any of the funnel clouds actually touched down.
“We think everything passed over us and while we did get several warnings from the National Weather Service we don’t think any made it to the ground,” said Linda Griffin, Executive Director of the Chickasaw County Emergency Management Agency. “The funnel cloud that was spotted north of Houlka was part of the same storm that hit Tupelo.”
Griffin said the media did a good job of preparing the region for the threat of bad weather and emergency management agencies had been warned of possible bad weather over the weekend.
“We had good response from our teams and we were on top of these storms the best we could,” said Griffin. “People also responded to the warnings when they went out and the storm shelters were packed.”
Griffin said the first warning for northwest Chickasaw County went out about 3 p.m. Monday and were followed at about 4:30 p.m. of reports of a strong storm southeast of Houston.
“The storm in 2011 made people serious about seeking shelter,” said Griffin. “We only have 21 storm shelters across Chickasaw County and they were packed.
“We did open up the Houston Courthouse and we had over 100 people in the Old Jail,” said Griffin. “In Okolona the shelters also filled up and they went to the courthouse there and the Post Office.”
Captain Jason Davis, of the Houston Fire Department, said there were no reports of injury or major damage in Houston.
“We did have people calling us asking where the storm shelters were,” said Davis. “We were fortunate. There were no reports of injury or major damage.”
Griffin said there were not even reports of trees blocking roads in the county.
“I want to thank this community for helping the elderly and maintaining order at the storm shelters,” said Griffin. “That was a bad storm that passed over us and it missed us.”

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