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Local officials say a tornado struck Sanderson, leaving damaged buildings and multiple injuries

The west-side neighborhood of Lomita Terrace took the brunt of the storm that hit Sanderson.
Courtesy of Terrell County Sheriff Thaddeus Cleveland
The west-side neighborhood of Lomita Terrace took the brunt of the storm that hit Sanderson.

A tornado heavily damaged multiple homes and businesses in the small town of Sanderson on Sunday evening — leaving at least 10 people injured, according to Terrell County Sheriff Thaddeus Cleveland.

The West Texas sheriff said the majority of those hurt have already been released after receiving medical care, but at least two of those people were seriously injured.

“One [person] is still in critical condition, he’s a border patrol agent. He had a direct hit and was tossed a good ways from his home,” Thaddeus said. “The other lady, also took a direct hit, she was airlifted to El Paso to have surgery on her arm.”

So far, no deaths have been reported in the community of several hundred.

Buildings and cars were left wrecked in Sanderson after the small town was struck by a tornado Sunday night, according to officials.
Courtesy of Terrell County Sheriff Thaddeus Cleveland
Buildings and cars were left wrecked in Sanderson after the small town was struck by a tornado Sunday night, according to officials.

The storm primarily struck the “Lomita Terrace” neighborhood on the west side of Sanderson and left the community without power.

As of Monday morning, Cleveland said power had been partially restored “to the main portion of Sanderson” and that crews were working on getting electricity restored to the rest of town. A number of the community’s water wells are offline due to the outage, but bottled water is being distributed by the sheriff’s department, he explained.

Thaddeus said resources and support quickly poured into the community after the tornado — from volunteers and pallets of water to medical support.

“A tremendous amount of help poured into this small community and honestly so much help that we had to start sending some away,” Cleveland said. “We were gracious and grateful, but we were getting to a point where we had more resources than we needed.”

Sanderson lost power following the tornado, but as of Monday morning power had been restored to most of the community according to Cleveland.
Courtesy of Terrell County Sheriff Thaddeus Cleveland
Sanderson lost power following the tornado, but as of Monday morning power had been restored to most of the community according to Cleveland.

Along with aid from nearby communities, the Texas Department of Emergency Management and the Red Cross have personnel in Sanderson.

As of Monday morning, damage assessments were underway across Sanderson.

According to Thaddeus, despite the destruction, much of the debris has been removed and things feel somewhat back to normal.

“Roads are clear,” Cleveland said, “We’ve got everybody lending a helping hand…We’re a resilient community, you know, we're small, but we take care of each other.”

Mitch Borden is Permian Basin Reporter & Producer at Marfa Public Radio.