Winter storm downs trees, causes damage

Jan. 18, 2013 @ 05:21 PM

Snow may have been absent Friday morning, but 30 to 45 mph gusts of wind knocked down several trees Thursday night — hitting homes and power lines around Lee County.

At least two homes sustained direct strikes by trees or tree limbs, and other occupants reported downed trees and power lines in their yards and on the roads, said Lee County Emergency Services Director Shane Seagroves.

"We had a lot of wind around 7 to 8 [a.m.], with reports of trees being down, power outages and houses hit in the city and the county," he said.

Dacia McLean's home, located at the 1000 block of Goldsboro Avenue, was struck by a tree around 7 p.m. Thursday.

"We were in the house, and my baby was playing with her friend, and then we heard the crumble on the house," McLean said. "We walked back into the room, and the tree was sitting on the floor."

No one was injured in the incident, she said, and the American Red Cross of Lee County is assisting the family until the house can be repaired.

Lee County Red Cross Coordinator Michele Bullard said she was called to two homes, but only the McLean family needed assistance. The other family, whose home is located on John Rosser Road, was able to stay with nearby relatives.

"It wasn't very busy, but we'll need to keep our eyes open to the coming Monday and Tuesday," Bullard said. "Everyone needs to be listening to The Weather Channel and be prepared."

Two toppling trees narrowly missed Denise Bowyer's home, located in the 600 block of Highland Drive, but parts of the trees did hit the family's vehicles.

"Our dog came flying into the house, and this huge tree came down on the back side of my pool and made its way to my vehicle and my daughter's vehicle," Bowyer said.

Conditions are supposed to be nicer this weekend, Seagroves said, but residents should keep their eye on the weather in the coming week.