Overnight storm brings down 19 utility poles | The Wilson Times
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Overnight storm brings down 19 utility poles

Posted on May 20, 2022

Updated on May 23, 2022

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Brian Poythress, electric distribution supervisor for the city of Wilson, surveys the damage on Forest Hills Road where 19 power poles snapped during a storm around 1:30 a.m. Friday.

Brie Handgraaf | Times

Brian Poythress, electric distribution supervisor for the city of Wilson, surveys the damage on Forest Hills Road where 19 power poles snapped during a storm around 1:30 a.m. Friday.

Brian Poythress, electric distribution supervisor for the city of Wilson, surveys the damage on Forest Hills Road where 19 power poles snapped during a storm around 1:30 a.m. Friday.

Brie Handgraaf | Times

Brian Poythress, electric distribution supervisor for the city of Wilson, surveys the damage on Forest Hills Road where 19 power poles snapped during a storm around 1:30 a.m. Friday.

An early Friday storm brought down 19 utility poles along Forest Hills Road.

Brie Handgraaf | Times

An early Friday storm brought down 19 utility poles along Forest Hills Road.

City crews are shown at the scene where 19 utility poles snapped during a severe storm that blew through Wilson County around 1:30 a.m. Friday.

Brie Handgraaf | Times

City crews are shown at the scene where 19 utility poles snapped during a severe storm that blew through Wilson County around 1:30 a.m. Friday.

Nineteen power poles were lost during the storm around 1:30 a.m. Friday.

Brie Handgraaf | Times

Nineteen power poles were lost during the storm around 1:30 a.m. Friday.

Brian Poythress, electric distribution supervisor for the city of Wilson, surveys the damage on Forest Hills Road where 19 power poles snapped during a storm around 1:30 a.m. Friday.

Brie Handgraaf | Times

Brian Poythress, electric distribution supervisor for the city of Wilson, surveys the damage on Forest Hills Road where 19 power poles snapped during a storm around 1:30 a.m. Friday.

Brian Poythress, electric distribution supervisor for the city of Wilson, surveys the damage on Forest Hills Road where 19 power poles snapped during a storm around 1:30 a.m. Friday.

Brie Handgraaf | Times

Brian Poythress, electric distribution supervisor for the city of Wilson, surveys the damage on Forest Hills Road where 19 power poles snapped during a storm around 1:30 a.m. Friday.

Brian Poythress, electric distribution supervisor for the city of Wilson, surveys the damage on Forest Hills Road where 19 power poles snapped during a storm around 1:30 a.m. Friday.
An early Friday storm brought down 19 utility poles along Forest Hills Road.
City crews are shown at the scene where 19 utility poles snapped during a severe storm that blew through Wilson County around 1:30 a.m. Friday.
Nineteen power poles were lost during the storm around 1:30 a.m. Friday.
Brian Poythress, electric distribution supervisor for the city of Wilson, surveys the damage on Forest Hills Road where 19 power poles snapped during a storm around 1:30 a.m. Friday.

lisa@wilsontimes.com | 252-265-7810

A strong thunderstorm roared through Wilson County around 1:30 a.m. Friday, snapping 19 utility poles along Forest Hills Road between N.C. 42 and Downing Street and leaving damage behind throughout the area.

The downed poles and power lines remained in the road Friday morning along one of the busiest areas in Wilson. Residents were asked to avoid that area. Forest Hills Road was closed between N.C. 42 and Downing. Traffic lights weren’t functioning in that area.

At 5:30 Friday morning, more than 14,000 Wilson Energy customers were still without power. As of 9:30 a.m., there were 77 customers without power — mostly in the area where the power poles were snapped, according to Rebecca Agner, communications and marketing director for the city.

Dan Leins, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service, said the damage in Wilson was likely caused by straight line winds. He said none of the radar data indicates tornadic activity. The winds, however, were in the 70 to 75 mph range — which is roughly hurricane strength.

Leins said the storm originated in the Triad area and came through Wake, Johnston and Wayne counties as well, but the most storm damage reports were from Wilson County and included downed trees and one trailer blown off its foundation. Leins said the rain estimate in the Wilson area was under 1 inch.

City crews have been working since the storm blew through and will have power restored as soon as possible, but there is no estimated time for that, Agner said on Friday.

Agner said crews will have to reconstruct the damaged poles and wires. She said additional crews were coming to help from Greenville Utilities, Apex, Tarboro and Rocky Mount.

Wilson County Schools closed all schools on Friday because of power outages across the district.

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