Straight-line winds down trees in Atlee, Rutland areas

Posted on Wednesday, June 12, 2013 at 3:14 pm

The storm that rolled through Hanover County Sunday evening left behind fallen trees, power outages and some flooding.

Sunday’s storm looms over Pole Green Park in Mechanicsville. (Photo courtesy of Julie Anderson)

The county was, however, spared the tornado forecasters had originally warned against. Meteorologist Jeff Orrock said the storm was actually the result of straight-line winds that reached up to 60 and 70 mph in the north side of Mechanicsville and Atlee areas.

The storm caused mostly tree-related damage said Orrock.

“Fifty to 60 trees or more fell down in a two-mile area of Atlee and Rutland,” Orrock said.

Consequently, Virginia Dominion Power reported more than 1,200 power outages in Hanover and roughly 1,600 outages in the greater Richmond area. At 9 p.m. on Sunday, Dominion Power said there were 11,782 customers without power.

The Hanover County Fire Department received 64 calls in 2.5 hours ranging from car accidents to fallen trees and downed wires. There were no injuries reported, according to W.E. “Willie” Jones, deputy fire marshal.

“There was nothing substantial. We are very fortunate,” Jones said.

The Atlee and Shady Grove areas received the worst of the storm, said Jones, adding that fallen trees smashed a car and damaged the roof of an Atlee home. As for flooding, Jones said a great deal of water collected on Route 301 during the downpour and heavy winds Sunday.

Virginia Dominion Power workers were removing trees from power lines and trying to restore some Hanover residents’ power Monday afternoon, Jones said.

In the Rutland area, Emergency Manager Corey Beazley said he found fallen trees that all pointed towards the south and southeast, “which confirms straight-line winds as the cause of the storm.”

But Sunday’s storm won’t be the last one Hanover sees, Beazley said; there’s a possibility the county will experience another strong straight-line wind and thunder storm this Thursday, said Beazley.

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