Softball-sized hailstones and high winds left evidence of severe storms that swept across the state Monday and Tuesday, with property damage stretching from Lawton to Grove and several people reporting injuries.
Tuesday night, nearly 100,000 people lost power in the metro area. Downed power lines caused traffic snags, and high water trapped some people in vehicles.
Bethany, Edmond, Nichols Hills, Piedmont, The Village and Warr Acres were in the path of the storm, according to the weather service. Some hailstones larger than softballs were reported in the Piedmont and north Oklahoma City areas. Large hail fell across the Oklahoma City metro area and Canadian County.
Winds in excess of 60 mph were reported.
Two people reported being hit by hailstones and one was hit by debris Tuesday evening, EMSA officials said.
EMSA field supervisor Tony McCarty said one person was hit by a flying sign near Interstate 40 and Robinson Ave.
Of the two people hit by hailstones, one was taken to a hospital with a non-life-threatening injury. One of the victims was injured at NW 103 and Pennsylvania Avenue. The other hailstone injury location was not available Tuesday night.
Medics also responded to 14 wrecks directly attributable to the storms, “whether by low visibility, sliding through pooled water or disregarding traffic laws at intersections where power was off to traffic lights,” McCarty said.
About 500 people went to Mercy Hospital in Oklahoma City to take cover, said Rachel Wright, a Mercy spokeswoman. She said there was no structural damage reported at the hospital.
Oklahoma City police Lt. Don Holland and Oklahoma City Fire Department Deputy Chief Marc Woodard confirmed downed power lines and reports of hail damage and broken windows, especially in northern and northwest Oklahoma City. Woodard reported “21 power line incidents” including one at NW 164 and Western Avenue, near a gas station, Woodard said.
Holland also reported many home alarms going off from the hail and wind.
Downed power lines caused traffic problems at intersections, including Memorial Road and Pennsylvania Avenue, and at Hefner Road and Western Avenue, Holland said.
About 95,000 Oklahoma Gas and Electric Co. customers were without power at 10:50 p.m. in the metro area, according to OG&E's System Watch website.
The Oklahoma City Fire Department responded to several fires that could be attributed to lightning strikes, Woodard said.
Flames were reported at Remington Park about 10 p.m., when an air handling unit caught fire on the roof. “More than likely, lightning struck it,” Woodard said. The building was evacuated. A house fire was reported at 3913 NW 16 at 10:30 p.m. The cause of that fire was not known.
The Oklahoma City Fire Department also handled several rescues, including four people stuck in kayaks in the Oklahoma River near SW 15 and Meridian Avenue, and two people trapped in a vehicle in high waters at 400 Ann Arbor.
A tornado warning had been issued Tuesday night by the National Weather Service in Canadian and Oklahoma counties, with circulation reported by police and the public. Circulation weakened shortly after the warning was issued.
Storms start Monday
Monday night, high winds crumpled a cellphone tower on the east side of Lawton. The storm knocked out power to 8,500 electric customers in Comanche County.
Parts of south and east Lawton were hit with hail and high winds Monday evening, ripping off roofs, toppling trees and downing power lines, leaving thousands of residents without power, The Associated Press reported.
Damage was seen near Sheridan Road south of Gore Boulevard, although hail and high winds were reported across a swath of Comanche and Stephens counties.
Numerous roofs were damaged in Lawton, including at Independence Place Apartments and the MacArthur High School gym, both on East Gore Boulevard.
Some roofs were damaged and hail and wind hit other structures.
In Oklahoma City, lightning hit a house about 12:25 a.m. Tuesday at 2652 SW 96. No one was injured. The fire caused about $30,000 damage, said fire Battalion Chief Brian Stanaland.
Just before 1 a.m. Tuesday, about three miles north of Grove, winds separated and moved docks at Holden's Cove on Grand Lake and stripped shingles from the roof of a home, according to the National Weather Service.
Contributing: Staff reporters Matt Dinger, Jaclyn Cosgrove, Juliana Keeping and Robert Medley