Tropical Storm Laura cut through buildings, ripped roofs off of homes, and tossed vehicles on their sides Thursday as the storm struck parts of Louisiana and Texas.
The tropical storm was downgraded from a Category 4 hurricane, with the eye of the storm passing over Lake Charles, Louisiana, early Thursday morning, media reports show. Four deaths have been attributed to the storm so far, The New York Times reported Thursday.
Drone video shows the storm ripping off roofs and caving in walls, leaving living rooms and other areas of homes exposed to the outdoors.
One time lapsed video from the Weather Channel shows the before and after effects of Laura on a massive building in Lake Charles. The storm’s powerful winds effectively hollowed out the building and knocked out nearly half the windows.
“It looks like 1,000 tornadoes went through here. It’s just destruction everywhere,” Brett Geymann, a resident who decided not to evacuate and chose instead to ride out the storm with family members near Lake Charles, Louisiana, told reporters. “There are houses that are totally gone. They were there yesterday, but now gone.”
Geymann said the storm passing overhead early Thursday morning sounded like a jet-engine.
Laura brought 150-mile-an-hour winds and a storm surge out of the warm waters of the Gulf of Mexico, eventually weakening as it moved inland. Roughly 600,000 service locations were without electric power in Louisiana, Gov. John Bel Edwards told The NYT.
“It is clear that we did not sustain and suffer the absolute catastrophic damage that we thought was likely,” Edwards said. “But we have sustained a tremendous amount of damage.” One casualty was a 14-year-old girl who was killed when a tree fell on her family’s home, Edwards noted. Three other people also died amid the storm’s carnage.
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