Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Downburst Causes Damage, Closes Key U.S. Border Bridge in Laredo, Texas

Associated Press
Published: May 23,2017

Storm damage is seen at the World Trade Bridge between Laredo, Texas, and Nuevo Laredo, Mexico, on Monday, May 22, 2017, one day after the storms hit the area.
(GDA via AP Images)
The National Weather Service said a downburst was responsible for damage that forced authorities to close one of the busiest commercial crossings on the U.S.-Mexico border.
Sunday's severe storm led to power outages, flooding and structural damage at the World Trade Bridge between Laredo, Texas, and Nuevo Laredo, Mexico, U.S. Customs and Border Protection said in a statement. The bridge was closed to traffic until further notice.
According to an NWS storm report, the downburst had estimated winds as high as 80 mph, and the damage path was about 6 miles long. The storms were also deadly, as 14-year-old Aldo Jordani Rojas was electrocuted when he stepped into a puddle that contained a downed power line, the San Antonio Express-News reported.
(MORE: Flood Threat Persists in the South)
Images from the area show tractor trailers flipped on their sides and cosmetic damage to bridge facilities. Power was knocked out in several Mexican border cities.
The World Trade Bridge is exclusively for commercial traffic between the two countries. The U.S. facility processes more than 12,000 cargo vehicles per day.
Commercial traffic is being rerouted to the Colombia-Solidarity bridge.
MORE: Severe Weather Hits the Plains

The Weather Company’s primary journalistic mission is to report on breaking weather news, the environment and the importance of science to our lives. This story does not necessarily represent the position of our parent company, IBM.

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