Storm dumps hail, rain on Portales

By Clarence Plank: PNT staff writer

Portales got some much needed rain, but some residents took a battering in the process.

Heavy rain caused problems in troublesome areas of town with flooding leading the Police Department to block off roadways.

Police Capt. Lonnie Berry said they had to block off Third Street and Kilgore Avenue when motorists cars stalled in high water.

Some of the bigger vehicles could make it through, but the smaller ones could not, Berry said.

“We had to close the intersection at Third Street and Kilgore Avenue,” Berry said. “There was too much water going down, we had to give it a little bit of time.”

Police were out making sure things were OK on the streets with vehicles possibly stalling out in the standing water in lower places.

Berry said at one point he was walking in the water 4 inches above his knees.

National Weather Service spokesperson David Craft in Albuquerque said Portales and Clovis received an inch of rain from the storm.

“Radar indicated possible one to two inches of rain fell across Portales,” Craft said. “That could have been a little heavy since we knew the storm had hail.”

Other residents dealt with wind and hail damage off N.M. 202 toward Muleshoe, with a confirmation of a funnel cloud by Cannon Air Force Base at 5:16 p.m.

Roy and Kim Tarango said they heard loud winds and saw debris flying by the windows.

“I’m in shock, look at my house,” Kim said. “It was very, very loud, especially the windows breaking. When the windows started breaking I thought the whole house was going to be gone.”

The storm destroyed bushes in front of her house. Roy said he saw things flying past the window at the back of the house.

“I knew the house was falling apart, but I thought it was the roof,” Roy said. “I guess it was the siding flying over. I heard a lot of rumbling so I went inside (a closet), it was louder than a train.”

Craft said he heard a report about a house having the siding ripped off, windows broken and a foot deep of golf ball size hail.

“We got a report of a golf ball size hail in a three mile swath on N.M. 202,” Craft said. “We did have a report of a funnel cloud, but no sighting of a tornado on the ground.”