The southern sector of the city was littered with huge fallen trees tangled in power lines after a powerful storm whipped the city Friday morning.
Huge pine trees snapped or uprooted by a strong wind were across lawns at South Broad Street and Tuxedo Drive and at Junius and Blackshear streets.
Trees also were across Wimbledon Drive, among other residential streets in the area, including Old Monticello Road.
Fallen trees struck some houses and narrowly missed others.
Some large pines snapped and fell into stands of other trees, remaining in somewhat upright positions, but unanchored at ground level.
Broken power lines dangled from power poles. Broken lines also lay crumpled on barricaded residential streets.
A woman who lives off Old Monticello told police a trampoline was stolen from her yard. The trampoline had been picked up by the wind and was found wrapped around a tree in a neighbor’s yard.
The National Weather Service in Tallahassee, Fla., reported storm wind gusts from 50 to 70 miles per hour, said Lisa Griffis, Thomas County Emergency Management Agency deputy director.
The storm struck shortly before 8:30 a.m., moving about 40 miles per hour, pushed by a cool front.
Workers from almost every City of Thomasville government department sprang into action to restore power outages, alleviate storm water drainage issues, provide public safety, remove downed trees and to respond to other severe weather-related conditions.
“Due to the large amount of downed trees, fallen tree limbs and broken power poles, our electric network suffered numerous broken and downed lines,” Assistant City Manager/Utilities Don Atkinson said late Friday afternoon. “Our staff did an amazing job of immediately springing into action to begin clearing the damage and restoring services. However, due to the extent of the damage, we are still in the process of clearing lines and replacing poles in order to restore power to the affected areas.”
About 40 incidents of fallen trees or road obstructions were reported.
At the storm’s peak, power outages affected about 2,200 customers.
“Currently, we have been able to restore service to about half of the customers who experienced a loss of power,” Atkinson said. “It’s important to note, that while we had 40 reported incidents of fallen trees and roadway obstructions, the actual number of trees and limbs that our crews must take care of is far higher.”
“All staff members are doing everything they can to return Thomasville back to normal as soon as possible,” he added.
Crews from Cairo and Moultrie responded to help restore power and clear streets of fallen trees.
Trees fell on two residences on County Farm Road. One residence was occupied, the other vacant.
Three trees were down on U.S. 19 South, one on Libbey Lane and on U.S. 84 East at Salem Road.
Thomas County’s smaller municipalities were spared damages.
No injuries were reported as a result of the inclement weather.
Senior reporter Patti Dozier can be reached at (229) 226-2400, ext. 1820.