Storms hit Triangle, but 'big cool-down' on the way

Posted September 28, 2011

— Storms rolled across the Triangle again overnight, but by the weekend, dramatically cooler, drier and sunnier weather will take hold.

A strong band of thunderstorms dumped as much as an inch of rain and sparked lots of lightning as it crossed Chatham County through Wake County northeast to the Virginia border late Tuesday and early Wednesday, WRAL meteorologist Elizabeth Gardner said.

A fallen tree blocked McDowell Street in downtown Raleigh as the morning rush hour began, but most of the damage was concentrated in the Five Points area. Downed trees and limbs were scattered about the neighborhood in the storm's wake, and hundreds were without power.

A giant oak tree collapsed on Nelson Mendoza's home on Pershing Road, landing on top of his bedroom. Mendoza said he awoke as he was tossed in midair and ran into the living room to find his boxer dog.

"There was a huge crashing sound and a huge light. I didn't even realize what was happening," Mendoza said. "I'm sitting there, hugging my dog, just trembling, trying to figure out what happened."

His house, which was built in the 1920s, sustained water and structural damage.

Neighbor David Lee said he heard the storm as well.

"(There was) real strong wind, I mean, real strong, like a a train roaring. And so, I jumped up out of the bed and came to the front door, and it was hailing and raining and wind blowing so hard you couldn't even see street lights," he said.

Man, dog escape storm-felled tree Man, dog escape storm-felled tree

Hot and humid conditions could spark more showers and storms as a weak cold front passes across the region Wednesday.

"We're finally going to kick this weather pattern out soon, and by the weekend, we'll see much different conditions: cooler, drier, plenty of sunshine," Gardner said.

The weak front won't cool things down – highs will be in the low 80s Thursday and Friday – but it will drive away the chance of rain for Thursday.

On Friday, a stronger cold front will pass through, possibly sparking a shower or two. Then, "the big cool-down ensues," Garnder said.

The daily highs will dip into the 60s Saturday and Sunday, while the overnight lows will be chilly, in the 40s.

The start of the next work week will see a warm-up, with highs returning to the mid 70s Monday and around 80 degrees Tuesday.

The sunshine and dry weather, though, will be here to stay for those days.


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  • Moose is loose Sep 29, 2011

    Weathercall let me sleep through the deadly storm. Why didn't they wake me, the thunder surely did?

  • Shamrock Sep 29, 2011

    Saw a lot of lightening last night, but unfortunately no rain.

  • jblake1932 Sep 28, 2011

    Well, that 40% chance of rain vanished. Now only if their forecast's would!

  • LBJ192 Sep 28, 2011

    Its going to feel like winter this weekend to us southerners!

  • bmg379 Sep 28, 2011

    In the april tornadoes I heard lots of neighbors talk about swingsets and trampolines and even sheds,please get your selves a cheap earth anchor system,even lowes sells them and save 2 headaches.Losing your equipment and saving someones car and or home from having it come crashing down on it.

  • Screw WrAl Sep 28, 2011

    "Wrong story, this one is about the weather."

    No it's not, it's about illusions called weather. But in honor of the morning pant suit forecasts, who's ready for record high temps all winter long? Chief is going to be really upset this time around. With all the new fancy equipment he's going to have to re-learn, unlike the last that after a deacade he never figured out how to work correctly, it will be a short, warm and sad winter for the snow lover with new toys.

  • Shamrock Sep 28, 2011

    "Where is the money for the new rail system going to come from? Going to raise taxes again and then spend it on nonsense again?"

    Wrong story, this one is about the weather.

  • Shamrock Sep 28, 2011

    Loved the rain last night. We sure need as much as we can get right now.

  • Screw WrAl Sep 28, 2011

    buick, glad to see one voter in this state figuring it out.

    all aboard!

  • CherryPicker Sep 28, 2011

    Where is the money for the new rail system going to come from? Going to raise taxes again and then spend it on nonsense again?