Wind topples trees, causes power outages

Posted February 10, 2010

— Strong, cold winds swept through the Triangle on Wednesday causing downed trees and knocking out power in some areas.

Winds gusted up to 50 mph Wednesday afternoon, but had slowed down by late evening, WRAL chief meteorologist Greg Fishel said.

Thursday will be sunny with highs in the 40s and winds 15 to 20 mph.

"The winds will not be as strong Thursday as they were on Wednesday," WRAL meteorologist Mike Maze said.

Trees topple, power outages reported

Trees fell throughout the area Wednesday, causing some power outages and traffic delays.

Strong winds caused a large tree to fall in the 400 block of Canal Street in Durham around 2:40 p.m., according to Durham Police spokeswoman Kammie Michael. Some intersections were blocked while crews cleared the tree.

Tree falls on Raleigh woman's home Tree falls on Raleigh woman's home

A downed tree on Interstate 40 East at Airport Boulevard caused back-ups around noon.

A massive oak tree fell on a home on Harding Street in Raleigh around 1:30 p.m. Julia Bunn, 82, said she was watching TV when the tree crashed into her home.

"It scared me so bad," Bunn said. "I heard a fuss, like a rumble, and all of a sudden it was a big crash."

Bunn and her husband planted the oak tree shortly after they moved into the home more than 60 years ago.

"I planted that tree. I was stupid," she joked.

Bunn was not injured. She plans to stay with family members in Raleigh until her home can be repaired.

The wind lifted the roof off of a commercial building in downtown Roanoke Rapids around 2 p.m., dispatchers said.

Earlier Wednesday, strong winds caused an awning to fall in downtown Raleigh. On Cooke Street, trees landed on power lines. Nearby on Edenton Street another tree fell, taking out power lines and damaging a deck and other property.

Downed trees were also reported on N.C. Highway 50 at Rand Road, south of Garner, and N.C. Highway 902 between Alex Cockman Road and U.S. Highway 4, west of Pittsboro.

Authorities in Robeson County said a tree fell on a car along Tarheel Road east of Saint Pauls around 6 a.m. trapping two people inside. They were being treated for serious injuries.

'Ferocious wind' topples trees, could make driving dangerous Dangerous winds hit Fayetteville

Near downtown Fayetteville, wind gusts shattered the lighted sign of Deno's Pizza Palace. The sign will cost about $6,000 to replace, authorities said.

Trees were also reported down in Halifax County. One tree briefly blocked Interstate 95.

Progress Energy said that about 17,900 customers across the state were without power at 9 p.m. Duke Energy had over 20,000 customers in the Carolinas without power.

A tree hit a power line in Hope Mills around 6 a.m., and briefly disrupted power for about 2,000 customers of Lumbee River Electric Membership Corporation. About 100 Lumbee customers lost power when a line went down along Galatia Church Road in west Fayetteville Wednesday afternoon.

South River Electric Cooperative, based in Dunn, reported only intermittent outages in Cumberland, Harnett, Johnston and Sampson counties.

Planes make windy landings at RDU Planes make windy landings at RDU

The winds Wednesday were so strong some planes at Raleigh-Durham International Airport had to make more than one pass at the runway before landing.

"It started to get a little turbulent," traveler Joe Trask said of his plane’s landing at RDU. "It was a bit scary.”

So turbulent, Trask says his pilot did not make the first landing attempt.

"The plane started to shake a little bit, and he had to pull up and he got back on the intercom and said the cross-winds are too strong,” Trask recalled.

Flood warnings issued

Several counties are also under flood warnings, including Edgecombe, Robeson and Wayne counties. The Neuse, Cape Fear and Tar rivers were among those that are experiencing high water levels.

In Dare County, significant flooding was reported along N.C. Highway 12 from Oregon Inlet to Rodanthe and from Avon to Rodanthe North, the sheriff's office said.

Ferry routes suspended

The North Carolina Department of Transportation’s Ferry Division suspended operations at Hatteras, Ocracoke, Swan Quarter, Cedar Island and Pamlico River on Wednesday due to extremely high winds.

Operations could be suspended through Thursday morning, depending on the severity of the wind speeds. Other ferry routes could be affected as well.

Some flights delayed, canceled due to Mid-Atlantic snow storm

A snow storm in the Mid-Atlantic region caused trouble for some airline passengers on Wednesday.

At RDU, passengers arriving or flying to Chicago, Washington D.C., Baltimore and Philadelphia were seeing delays or cancellations, RDU spokeswoman Mindy Hamlin said.

Traveler Karen Quartaro was looking for a flight Wednesday to Rochester, New York.

"There are a lot of cancellations,” she said.

Quartaro found a way to get to her destination but will have to fly south to Atlanta first. She says it beats not flying at all.

"I am sure there are a lot of people who are not getting where they want to go,” Quartaro said.


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  • Krzyzewskiectomy Feb 10, 2010

    I'm in northern Virginia and we have been getting clocked since early December. I amready for spring.

  • GWALLY Feb 10, 2010

    Heck the wind blew so hard my trailer moved 2 lots closer to that's what I'm talking bout'...gas savings to boot!!!!

  • time4real Feb 10, 2010

    ALRIGHT! Good to know somebody is enjoying the wealth of winter.

    Down here in the "viewing area", you know it ain't your year when they issue winter storm watches for the gulf coast and are predicting snow for Charleston, Hilton Head and Myrtle Beach, but the "viewing area" ain't going to get a flake. WOW!

  • Krzyzewskiectomy Feb 10, 2010

    Up here we have the snow to go along with the winds. In the past 10 days I have picked up nearly 50 inches of snow and had a 60 MPH wind gust this morning.

  • scarletindurham Feb 10, 2010

    I was shrieking in my bed early this AM because the wind sounded sooo scary lol..

    I bet I'll have a nice littered yard o trash when I get home. Yippee.

  • NCCoachSE Feb 10, 2010

    Thankfully the power came back on, it was out most of the morning...when is spring springing???

  • Remy Feb 10, 2010

    time4real - See if Mr. Fishel agrees with you! I'd say El Nino was one big disappointment.

    Does it really matter if Mr. Fishel agees. Each person has their own opinions as you have proven to us over and over again.

  • Hans Feb 10, 2010

    Good thing there's no cold rain with this ferocious wind. Surely, it would be the end of us all.

  • Kilroywashere Feb 10, 2010

    time4real - What are you talking about?

  • DeathRow-IFeelYourPain-NOT Feb 10, 2010

    Not over yet. But looks like we've survived.