Jamaica Beach hit by tornado as Hurricane Beryl makes landfall

A tornado tore through Galveston County, causing extensive damage, as Hurricane Beryl's strong winds gusted up to 80 mph, leaving several homes severely impacted.

The National Weather Service confirmed that a tornado hit Jamaica Beach, blowing the roofs off two homes and a commercial plaza. The aftermath of the tornado was visible in the downed power lines and front yards of homes filled with water due to the storm surge.

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Jamaica Beach Police Chief Raymond Garivey reported significant damage from the early morning storm. "We got some pretty good damage this morning—probably around 6 a.m. We lost a couple of rooftops to a couple of homes," Garivey said.

Residents of the small coastal community, home to about 1,100 people, faced terrifying hurricane conditions, with some evacuating voluntarily while others chose to stay and face Beryl. As the hurricane subsided, the community's focus shifted to clean up and recovery.

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"Now it's more of a cleanup, making sure people know what's going on in the community," Garivey added. Residents who had evacuated were particularly anxious to know the condition of their homes and businesses.

Concerns extend beyond the immediate cleanup, as Galveston County Judge Mark Henry pointed out the widespread power outages, affecting roughly 73% of the county. With temperatures expected to rise in the following days, restoring electricity is of paramount importance.

Emergency personnel with the City of Galveston have been hard at work over the last 72 hours preparing for and responding to Hurricane Beryl and its effects on the island.

Hurricane Beryl made landfall shortly before 4 a.m. in Matagorda Bay and moved across our area with gusty winds and rain continuing into the late morning Monday.

The storm produced wind gusts up to 78 mph, more than 4 inches of rainfall,  and high tides. Fortunately, we are not aware of any fatalities caused by the storm. However, we know many residents are dealing with damage to their homes in the form of wind damage, water leaks, downed fences and more. Because of the wind damage to power lines, much of the island also remains without power.

Power Outages

City leadership has been in communication with Galveston representatives from CenterPoint Energy and they are working diligently and around the clock to fix lines and restore power. While these efforts are full steam ahead, we want residents to know and prepare for a possible multi-day power outage. The estimated timeline is anywhere from 72 hours to two weeks in parts of the island. This is the only update we have currently as it relates to power outages. We will continue to update as we have more information.


Public works crews have been working around the clock to clear debris from city streets and install temporary traffic safety measures. Still, most streetlights are out, and we ask that residents take extra precautions when driving around the island.

Please call 409-797-3630 to report debris blocking roadways so city crews may respond.

City Services

Most public-facing city services will resume on Tuesday, July 9. Sanitation will collect Monday’s trash route. For now, sanitation will collect regular trash in carts. There will be future debris collection and please continue paying attention to the city website (www.galvestontx.gov/ ) and social media (//Facebook.com/CityofGalveston) for updates about debris collection.

City Hall, the Public Works Building, and Island Transit will resume normal operations tomorrow.
The Wright Cuney Recreation Center and McGuire Dent Recreation Center, as well as the Lasker Park pool, will be closed Tuesday. This means the summer youth program will not be open. Once power is restored at Wright Cuney, we will update the public about a timeframe for when the youth program will resume.

Reporting Damage

The Texas Department of Emergency Management is collecting damage surveys to assess the extent of damage to the area. These surveys will determine whether the threshold has been met for assistance from FEMA.  We encourage residents to submit information about their property damage at https://damage.tdem.texas.gov/.

City Emergency Management Office helpline

The City of Galveston’s Office of Emergency Management will remain open through the night until Tuesday, July 9 at 5 p.m. Residents may call and ask questions by contacting 409-797-3710.

City Updates

The City of Galveston has been providing frequent storm-related updates through our social media channels and website. If you have Facebook, please be sure to follow us at https://www.facebook.com/cityofgalveston. We are also posting on the city’s website at //galvestontx.gov/. You can sign up for these notices to be sent to you directly at www.galvestontx.gov/notifyme.