Thursday, May 14, 2009
Rain, wind topple trees
By SUE WATSON
A line of heavy thunderstorms that came through the south in the early morning hours May 6 produced enough wind and rain to topple about 25 trees over the county and state roadways, according to county administrator Larry Hall.
Power lines were also affected by wet or fallen limbs or trees, causing about 1,500 customers in the Red Banks-Victoria area to be without power for hours, according to John Collins, general manager for the Holly Springs Utility Department.
Hall said the worst winds came around 3:30 a.m. to 4 a.m. Wednesday morning knocking down long timber across roads beginning in the Chulahoma area and moving across the county to Benton County.
“It came into the county in the Chulahoma community along Highway 4 West and in the Highway 309 area,” Hall said. “It went all the way across to Laws Hill and was about three to five miles wide. It crossed the county to Lake Center and on into Benton County.”
Heavy rainfall of recent weeks has saturated the soil causing roots to give way particularly on large trees, he said. And with many trees with full leaves and holding rainwater on the leaves themselves, all worked together to topple them over, he said.
There was one large tree down over Cayce Road and a tree fell across a house on Tucker Road and had to be removed in order for the man of the house to get out, said Hugh Hollowell, emergency management coordinator.
The large tree fell across the bedroom of the mobile home while the couple were in bed, he said. The lady of the house was able to get out before rescue workers arrived but the gentleman was pinned in bed until help arrived, he said.
Both went to the hospital for checkups and were released. The man had bruises on his back, Hollowell said.
A tree also fell over a bedroom in a mobile home in Potts Camp but no one was injured, Hollowell said. A second mobile home was damaged in the area but not substantially, he said.
Collins said HSUD had to clean up trees and fallen limbs from the Woodward Avenue area in Holly Springs all the way to Victoria. A circuit was also knocked out at the North Station, he said. Service was restored Wednesday to all customers, Collins said. Some outages were called in before the big 4 a.m. storm came through, he said.
Northcentral Electric Power Association had about 1,000 customers to lose power system-wide as a result of the storm, according to Margaret Shoffner, customer service supervisor. About half of those were located in Marshall County, she said.
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