Tornado confirmed in Hoke County
Posted May 18, 2020 1:13 p.m. EDT
Updated May 22, 2020 4:52 a.m. EDT
Raeford, N.C. — The National Weather Service confirms a tornado touched down in Hoke County late Thursday afternoon.
The tornado touched down 5 miles northeast of Silver City just south of Plank Road in the east-central portion of the county at 3:58 p.m.
A tornado warning was issued for Cumberland County, just to the north and east of Fayetteville just before 4 p.m., and lightning and high winds were present in that storm cell. Hoke, Harnett and Moore counties were included in the warning.
The first and only storm-related death was reported Thursday morning in Surry County when a tree fell on a Mount Airy mobile home, killing a 20-year-old man.
The last 72 hours have seen some impressive rainfall totals -- one location in Durham had over six inches of rainfall. Raleigh, Clinton and Hillsborough got around five inches of rainfall on Thursday.
WRAL meteorologist Elizabeth Gardner said the Triangle has seen an average of 2 to 4 inches of rain.
Stanley County, near Charlotte, saw heavy rainfall which caused 50 roads to flood. Three people in the county had to be rescued from high water.
Gardner said some local rivers are rising, but they are unlikely to reach flood stage. The river most at risk is the Haw River in Alamance and Chatham counties, which could reach moderate flood stage near Burlington if heavy rain continues.
Most of this week's heavy rain has been off to the west, prompting landslides and rescues in the mountains, but the rain shifted east Wednesday and Thursday, putting more of the area under risk for potential flooding.
Falling trees, power outages
Breezy conditions and saturated grounds caused several trees to fall across the viewing area early Thursday, and as thunderstorms continue to develop, the winds could pick up.
A large tree fell around 2:30 a.m. and took down power lines on North Estes Drive in Chapel Hill, leaving 450 in the area without power. In Chatham County, a tree fell on Hillsboro Street in Pittsboro, leaving 415 customers without power.
A large tree also fell overnight in Durham, stretching across Guess Road, and another fell Wednesday morning, hitting the front of Alumni Hall at UNC.
And in Apex, crews removed a tree that fell at Buckingham Way and Downing Place.
At 6:30 a.m., more than 6,000 were without power in the state. Many of those are in west of Charlotte, but around 1,200 are in our area.
The rain also caused crashes. More than 1,000 customers lost power near Thornwood Drive in Sanford when a vehicle hit a pole around 1:45 a.m. A car also hit a power pole on Avent Ferry Road in Raleigh, but no outages were reported.