A severe thunderstorm with strong wind gusts and softball size hail hammered Del Rio Saturday night, causing extensive damage to vehicles, roofs and windows.
Neighbors throughout the city reported large hailstones, ranging from quarter size to golf ball and even softball size in their properties.
A severe thunderstorm warning issued by the National Weather Service alerted residents of Kinney County, Val Verde County and South Central Texas area of the storm, encouraging everyone to seek shelter immediately.
At 8:30 p.m the storm was located 12 miles east of Del Rio, moving east at 25 mph.
The storm carried a potential of 60-mile an hour wind gusts, the National Weather Service warning said.
The potential area of impact in the warning included the communities of Brackettville, Alamo Village, Standart, Amanda, Laughlin AFB, Escondido Estates and Fort Clark Springs.
STWX Strategic Weather Consulting Meteorologist Dan Schreiber said the storm certainly had the capacity to create a tornado.
"There were numerous reports of golf ball sized hail throughout Del Rio, and several reports of baseball to softball sized hail. This storm was rather non-discriminatory - it hit just about every part of town," Schreiber said.
Residents throughout the city, including the north side, east side and the downtown area reported extensive damages to their vehicles.
Hailstones in the Pulliam area were described by a homeowner as avocado size.
The area near the Val Verde County Courthouse had lots of small branches down right after the storm.
At least 80 vehicles parked outside Hyundai of Del Rio, 1508 Veterans Blvd., sustained severe damages due to the hailstorm hammering Del Rio Saturday night.
Most of the vehicles had smashed sunroofs, broken windshields and deep dents on metal surfaces.
Vehicles parked outside Rays Auto Body and Best Western of Del Rio were also damaged.
The National Weather Service issued a red flag warning Sunday morning alerting area residents of strong west winds, capable of creating hazardous fire conditions. The winds could reach 20-30 miles per hour, with gusts up to 40 miles per hour in the wake of a cold front, the weather service alerted.
“A very dry air mass will surge into the area with relative humidity values dropping to the
10s and low 20s late this morning and afternoon. The combination of strong winds and low relative humidity values will create critical fire weather conditions.”
The National Weather Service upgraded the fire weather watch to a red flag warning for the Rio Grande Plains and Val Verde County in their Sunday morning alert.
“Winds will rapidly decrease after 8 p.m. and humidity will slowly recover. However, another front arrives in the late evening, leading to shifty winds which could create additional concerns in the overnight hours should wildfires develop.
This story has been updated throughout to include more details and an update on the weather forecast.
Senior Staff Reporter Karen Gleason and Managing Editor Ruben Cantu contributed to this story.