Aerials: Tornado damages parts of Pearland

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by KHOU.com staff & Gabe Gutierrez / KHOU 11 News

khou.com

Posted on January 26, 2012 at 12:05 PM

Updated Thursday, Jan 26 at 12:21 PM

PEARLAND, Texas – The National Weather Service confirmed a tornado touched down in Pearland Wednesday afternoon and left quite a bit of damage behind.

Pearland police said there was a shelter-in-place order issued at a Walmart near the 1900 block of N. Main around noon after a funnel cloud was spotted.

“It sounded horrendous. It actually sounded like a hurricane,” DeJuan Lyles said. “First I saw the funnel cloud. First instinct was to protect my mom. Trying to get her inside before she left to go to work.”

His second instinct was to pick up his cell phone and record the storm as it whipped down North Main near West Plum.

Lyles and other residents saw the wind rip a roof right off a bike shop.

“I saw the metal roof of the building start peeling off and flipping in the air,” Lyles said.

The metal roof flew half a block before landing in a Chevron parking lot.

“All I saw was the roof come off the Pearland Cycle building and land on top of the Chevron,” said Floyd Shepherd, who worked at the Jiffy Lube down the block.

The roof flew over a small Mexican restaurant, only causing minor damage, but leaving insulation spread in disarray all over the block. 

“The restaurant shook. It was pretty loud. We were in shock. We didn’t know what was going on,” said Erendira Gomez.

Down the road at the Busy Bee Café, an employee said a tree fell on the restaurant’s roof.

“It sarted raining real hard. The winds kicked in, it looked like it was almost going sideways,” said Chris Landreville.

The storm hit during the busy lunch hour, but no one inside the Busy Bee – or the rest of Pearland—was hurt.

Crews from CenterPoint rushed to Pearland to restore power. They were still hard at work Wednesday evening.

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