Storm causes power outages

Courtesy photo This metal shed landed upside down in a vacant lot on Catherine Street after being picked up from its original location on Crawford Street by high winds generated during Tuesday’s thunderstorm. The thunderstorm also cause power outages affecting a total of 900 residences and businesses in the Union and Lockhart areas.

UNION — A thunderstorm that brought heavy rains, high winds and even hail Tuesday afternoon caused power outages in the Union, Lockhart and Whitmire areas that affected more than 1,000 residences and businesses.

City of Union Utility Director Joe Nichols said Wednesday afternoon that the storm caused power outages in several different areas in and around the city.

“The main one was we lost power to our substation on Times Boulevard,” Nichols said. “That affected the Bypass and the northern part of the city and the county.”

Nichols said that other outages were caused by tree limbs and even trees that fell across power lines.

“We had some trees go down across power lines and poles on Rice Avenue,” Nichols said. “We had an outage on Richard Street caused by a tree limb falling across power lines.”

On Lakeside Drive, Nichols said that the outage was not caused by a tree limb or tree actually falling across the power lines, but by tree that the high winds actually pushed into the power lines, causing some homes in the area to lose power.

The only other outage on the city system was on Highland Drive where a tree fell on power lines cutting power to several homes.

Nichols said that a total of approximately 400 city customers were affected by the outages, but that in most cases power was out for between 30 minutes to an hour. He said that it took city utility workers approximately three-four hours to have power completed restored.

Lockhart Power Chief Operating Officer Bryan Stone said Wednesday that the outage affecting the company’s service area actually began with the Duke Energy System. Stone said that some of the Duke equipment that feeds power into the Lockhart system tripped a circuit breaker during the storm around 3:30 p.m. causing an outage that affected approximately 500 customers. He said that power was restored to those customers after about an hour.

Broad River Electric Cooperative Member Services Coordinator Josh Crotzer said that 130 customers on the Broad River system were left without power for approximately two hours because of the storm.

Shed Blown Into Yard

In addition to causing trees and tree limbs to fall, in one case Tuesday’s high winds blew a metal shed from a residence at a residence on one street into a vacant lot on another.

Dave Berry said Wednesday that sometime during Tuesday’s storm a metal shed was blown into a vacant lot next to his home on Catherine Street. He said it turned out that the shed had been blown over to the lot from a residence on Crawford Street.

Berry said that the high winds also caused tree limbs to break off of trees on his street and fall into the yards of a couple of his neighbors up the street from him.