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Saturday storm causes major damage in county

Although damage in the millions of dollars’ worth was apparent from the early Saturday morning storm that passed through Carroll County, no injuries or fatalities were reported.

According to Carroll County Emergency Management director Janice Newman, a survey indicated that 48 homes received some type of damage with at least three having major damage. These totals did not include outbuildings such as sheds. A number of vehicles were crushed when trees or carports fell on them

It was a quick assessment, Newman admits. No actual dollar amounts concerning the damage have been revealed at this time.

 “We do an assessment quickly because Tennessee Emergency Management Agency (TEMA) wants to know right away,” she said. “The information goes to Jackson and then to the state in order to see if the county needs any resources.”

She said she realizes a closer look around will yield more damages and the total does not include all the homes that were damaged.

She said personnel from law enforcement, emergency management, first responders, highway, electric and fire departments and volunteers from the public sector worked together to help out in different areas where assistance was needed.

SHOP DESTROYED – Teddy and Laura Hooten’s shop in their front yard was destroyed at 560 Westport Road. Photo by Ray Nanney

“Everybody worked so hard,” she said. “Carroll County was so fortunate to be able to handle the situations with the resources we had.”

Newman said the storm struck between 6 and 6:30 a.m. The National Weather Service had issued a Significant Weather Advisory between 5:59 a.m. to 6:45 a.m., a Severe Thunderstorm Warning from 6:38 a.m. to 7:15 a.m. and a tornado watch from 7:40 a.m. until 10 a.m. 

The town of Bruceton had the most damage with trees uprooted, signs blown over and rooftops damaged.

Bob Dill who lives at 116 N. Carroll St. and is a member of the Hollow Rock Fire Department, said he heard the wind roaring and looked out to see the rain pouring down. In the midst of the storm, a tree fell on his 2012 Dodge Avenger car and another tree fell on the corner of his back porch.

“The whole house shook,” he said.

Strong winds during Saturday’s storms ripped the roof off one of the dugouts at the baseball field at Hollow Rock-Bruceton Central High School, according to Director of Schools David Duncan. A portion of the fence around the adjacent playground was also knocked down by the winds. A huge sign announcing the businesses located in the mall across from Casey’s store on Highway 70 was blown down.

Fifteen volunteers in Bruceton worked Sunday in a cleanup operation, spearheaded by Scott Smith, by sawing up fallen trees, and picking up debris, etc.

County Highway Department crew members worked to remove trees from roadways in the county that was blocking traffic movement. By Saturday afternoon, all rural county roads were passable, according to Ricky Scott, District I Road Supervisor, and Scotty Bailey, District II Road Supervisor.

A shed behind Mike Lewis’ house on highway 22 next to Davis Chapel United Methodist Church received major damage as the roof was deposited in neighbor Kenneth Davis Jr.’s yard and a nearby field.

Further down Davis Chapel Road, that joins Westport Road, the Hooten family, who resides at 560 Westport Road was still assessing their damages Saturday afternoon.

Teddy and Laura Hooten, their daughter, Kylee Hooten and her son Paxton, 7, and daughter, four months old, Oakleigh, got in the hallway of their double-wide mobile home when the storm struck at 6:30 a.m.

“It felt like it picked the home up and dropped it,” said Laura, noting it sounded like a train. “I said hang on and we’ll be ok.”

Teddy said the mobile home was moved about three inches off its foundation, windows were broken out and siding was taken off by the wind. A shop in the yard was left-leaning with a pickup inside holding it up. Two huge trees were blown down in the yard and a nearby woods looked like a war zone.

The Hooten family had great praise for those who came to give them assistance.

The storm caused power outages, knocking out 2,871 customers.

“We know exactly how many customers were without electricity due to new equipment that has been installed,” said Carroll County Electric manager Danny Brawner.

Crews had the power restored to all customers by Sunday night, according to Brawner and superintendent of operations Michael Williams.

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