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A large and extremely dangerous tornado is moving east through Newton County, roughly 130 miles northeast of Houston, according to the National Weather Service.
A tornado warning is currently in effect for parts of Newton and Jasper counties. The tornado, confirmed through radar, was seen at 7:28 p.m. over the Jamestown, moving east at 40 mph, the weather service said.
“You are in a life-threatening situation,” according to a notice from the weather service. “Flying debris may be deadly to those caught without shelter. Mobile homes will be destroyed. Considerable damage to homes, businesses, and vehicles is likely and complete destruction is possible.”
Photos shared on social media show extensive damage Onalaska, located in Polk County west of Jamestown. The Texas Department of Transportation said FM 356 in Onalaska is shut down because of the storm damage.
“Avoid the area as crews respond to assess and begin cleanup,” according to a tweet from TxDOT. “Stay alert for downed power lines or trees across the roadway.”
The extent of the damage so far is unclear. Residents have been asked to take cover.