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Severe Weather in Texas: 2003

Severe weather in Texas can be categorized by two factors: loss of life and the cost of damage estimating over $1 million. The following events were included because they caused an extensive amount of destruction and in some cases, fatalities were also a result of the severe weather.

Feb. 24–26, 2003: Snow/Ice. North Central Texas. A severe cold front brought freezing rain, sleet and snow to the North Central Texas. Snow accumulations were as high as 5 inches resulting in $15 million in damages. Most schools and businesses were closed for this period.

April 8, 2003: Rainstorm. Brownsville. A severe thunderstorm caused one of the most destructive hail events in the history of Brownsville. Hail exceeded 2.75 inches in diameter and caused $50 million in damages to the city. At least 5 injuries were reported.

July 14–16, 2003: Hurricane Claudette. Port O’Connor. The hurricane made landfall near Port O’Connor in the late morning hours of the 14th. At landfall, wind speeds were more than 90 mph. The system, which moved westward toward Big Bend and northern Mexico, caused 1 death and 2 injuries, and total damages were estimated at more than $100 million.

Sept. 2003: Floods. Upper Coast, South Texas. Persistent flooding during the month caused more than $2 million in damages. The remnants of Tropical Storm Grace caused flash flooding along the Upper Coast region near Galveston early in September, with rainfall estimates in Matagorda County ranging from 6 to 12 inches. During the second half of the month, South Texas was hit with a deluge of rain caused by a tropical wave combined with approaching cold fronts, and monthly rainfall totals ranged from 7 to 15 inches throughout the deep south.

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