Deadly Tornado Prompts Spike of Storm Shelter Permits in Rockwall, Rowlett

Experience, the old saying goes, is the best teacher.And after a wicked EF-4 tornado blew threw through northeast Dallas County and into Rockwall County on Dec. 26, 2015, residents there learned they needed some extra protection.In the 15 months since the storms -- which ultimately killed 13 people as they ripped through the area -- Rockwall and Rowlett have seen a spike in the number of storm shelter requests. Rockwall issued one shelter permit in 2011, one in 2012, none from 2013-15. But it issued five in 2016 and four already this year, and that was before the scare from last month's wind shear event that damaged several homes. Rowlett, meanwhile, issued one tornado shelter permit in the six months prior to the tornado. Since that time, they have approved an astonishing 24.  Continue reading...

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