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An evening thunderstorm Wednesday from Oklahoma brought strong winds and a heavy downpour, which combined to down trees and power lines and poles.

A strong storm that sparked a severe thunderstorm warning for Choctaw County around 5:30 p.m. Wednesday rolled into Lamar County with winds strong enough to down trees and power lines.

Power in parts of Paris near downtown and on the east side was down for hours as electric company linemen responded to multiple areas of downed lines, such as along 6th Street NE near East Houston Street, where a downed tree caused significant damage to electric infrastructure.

The storm developed north of Choctaw County just after 5 p.m. and tracked due south toward the area. 

Parts of Red River County, especially areas south of Clarksville, received the heaviest rain after the storm tore through Hugo, Oklahoma, with 60 mph winds and penny-sized hail. Because heavy downpours were spotty, the National Weather Service reported an official tally of just 0.03 inches of rain.

Lamar Electric Cooperative reported “big outages” east of Annona, in the Bagwell area, along the line from Negley to Manchester and the line east of Powderly. Linemen found a large tree limb on the main line north of Novice, the cooperative reported, and warned that lightning in the area also was affecting service.

Storm chances today through Saturday remain relatively low, according to the National Weather Service. The rare July cold front that helped trigger the storm will keep regional temperatures a few degrees lower than they had been earlier in the week when the National Weather Service issued heat advisories in preparation of triple-digit heat indices.

Today should be sunny with a high of 91 and a heat index value of 100. Winds will continue to come from the north at about 5 to 10 mph. Tonight is expected to be mostly clear with a low of 71.

Friday is forecast to repeat today’s weather, and so is Saturday, though a 20% chance for afternoon storms returns that day.

The National Weather Service warns that tropical storm conditions are possible Sunday, though the latest models show Tropical Storm Barry in the Gulf of Mexico turning further east than previously expected. As a result, the Red River Valley should experience occasionally gusty winds of 15 to 20 mph.

No severe weather is expected in the region, the National Weather Service forecast discussion stated.

Klark Byrd is the managing editor of The Paris News. He can be reached at 903-785-6960 or klark.byrd@theparisnews.com.

Klark Byrd is the managing editor of The Paris News and the editor of Paris Life Magazine. He resides in Paris with his wife, Krystle, and their three children, Charlie, Annalise and Willow.

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