People salvage items from their homes after a tornado struck, Saturday, May 13, 2023, in the unincorporated community of Laguna Heights, Texas, near South Padre Island.
(CNN) – One person was killed and a dozen injured when the tornado hit Texas’ south coast near the Mexico border around 4 a.m. Saturday, a Cameron County official said.
Port Isabel officials earlier said two people were killed in the Laguna Heights area between Port Isabel and Laguna Vista.
Cameron County Judge Eddie Trevino Jr. One man said his mobile home was “basically crushed” as a result of the damage. “You know, it’s been a while since the last time we had a weather disaster in that area or the entire Valley in general. So it is unfortunate,” he said.
Eleven people were taken to hospitals with life-threatening injuries, and one person was taken to Valley Regional Medical Center with additional injuries, he said.
The National Weather Service said in a preliminary damage assessment that an EF1 tornado — with wind speeds between 86 and 110 mph — struck between 4:01 a.m. and 4:06 a.m.
Trevino said 38 people are in temporary shelter in Port Isabel and the county is considering a curfew.
“We know that there are some people who may have had some property damaged but are reluctant to leave because they are afraid of being destroyed or harmed,” he said.
Tornadoes in the region are rare, the weather service said, usually happening once every several years.