Morning Tornado Briefing: Did The Convoys Work?

It will likely take a deal of time for everyone to be acclimated to the new, post-tornado normal, but clear roadways and electricity will do much to settle everyone’s glitter. Yesterday, we told you about convoys that are being deployed to high-impact areas — did it work?

Storms Halt Progress, But Progress Was Made
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If you’re trying to navigate Preston Hollow and North Dallas, it may not seem like it’s a lot better, given that there are still few streets you can traverse from one end of the other. If you think of the area as a big rectangle, the only roadways completely clear at this point are Northwest Highway, Forest Lane, and the two highways at either end, with the Dallas North Tollway transecting the whole shebang.

But crews are chipping away at more and more of the blocked roadways, as evidenced by the new convoy map the city released last night.

You can compare the most recent map on the left with yesterday’s map.

The city said the convoy strike team operations made great progress throughout the day on Thursday, but had to suspend operations in the evening because of the storms. Wednesday we checked in with Dallas Office of Emergency Management’s Rocky Vaz, who said that despite the rain in the forecast for Thursday and Friday, “unless there is lightning in the area, city crews will continue working.”

There was indeed lightning.

But you’re also going to want to plan ahead this weekend. The Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure will go through Preston Hollow, and while Dallas police have determined the route won’t have an impact on traffic, the route does begin and end at NorthPark Center and does include a small part of Hillcrest Road. You can see the map here.

You’ll also have to make sure you know the rules for a flashing red stop, or a stop sign for a multi-lane road because there are still 11 signals on flash, and 60 signals that aren’t working at all, meaning the intersections are four-way stops. As those signals come back online, they’ll be flashing, too.

Today may mark the last day that Bachman Recreation Center will be used as a respite center as more residents affected by the tornado have acquired lodging and aid.

Oncor announced that about 900 customers were still without power.

One-Stop-Shop for Ways to Help

Our sister publication, D Magazine, is compiling a massive list of volunteer and giving opportunities, as well as resources for those affected by the tornadoes. Know of an effort that’s missing? Share the details in the comments, and we’ll pass it on.

Local College, Pro Teams Rally to Help Schools

Several local teams have jumped in to help Dallas ISD as it relocates students to new schools.

The Texas Rangers donated $4,500 in gift cards and school supplies, and Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban announced Thursday that he would make a $100,000 donation to the Dallas Education Foundation’s Dallas ISD Tornado Disaster Relief Fund.

Cuban also indicated he’d be helping Thomas Jefferson’s athletic department replace needed equipment. SMU donated shoes and gloves for the football team, which plays their homecoming game at 10 a.m. Saturday morning at Loos Field vs. Spruce.

Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones already indicated that the organization would be making a donation to the Dallas Education Foundation’s fund, but Jones will also be on hand at the Saturday morning game to make a special presentation.

Speaking of homecoming, parents and students at W.T. White are working to create a homecoming dance for Thomas Jefferson’s students, and are hosting it at W.T. White. Volunteers will decorate the hallways at White today from 2:30 p.m. to 6 p.m., and the organizers are also seeking donations of sweet treats and drinks Saturday between 1 p.m. and 6 p.m. Volunteers are also needed from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. at the school gym to decorate for the dance.

Storms Cause Game Shuffling

The storms have caused shuffling of game locations for other schools, too. Since St. Mark’s campus suffered some extensive damage in the tornados, they’ve been practicing at Hockaday. They’ll play their homecoming game this weekend (which is versus Greenhill) at their opponent’s field.

Highland Park’s volleyball match against Thomas Jefferson today at 5 p.m. has been moved from Loos Field House to Forester Field House in eastern Dallas.

Loos is currently being used as a makeshift classroom space for Pershing Elementary, which is still without power.

Neighboring Cities Continue to Assist

Surrounding cities have been providing assistance to the city in the form of first responders (Sunday night and Monday) and repair and clean up crews.


Bethany Erickson

Bethany Erickson, Digital Editor at People Newspapers, cut her teeth on community journalism, starting in Arkansas. Recently, she's taken home a few awards for her writing, including first place for her tornado coverage from the National Newspapers Association's 2020 Better Newspaper Contest, a Gold award for Best Series at the 2018 National Association of Real Estate Editors journalism awards, a 2018 Hugh Aynesworth Award for Editorial Opinion from the Dallas Press Club, and a 2019 award from NAREE for a piece linking Medicaid expansion with housing insecurity. She is a member of the Education Writers Association, the Society of Professional Journalists, the National Association of Real Estate Editors, the News Leaders Association, the News Product Alliance, and the Online News Association. She doesn't like lima beans, black licorice or the word synergy. You can reach her at [email protected].

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