Wind damage extensive in Lucama | The Wilson Times
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Wind damage extensive in Lucama

Posted on May 20, 2022

Updated on May 23, 2022

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A fallen tree crushed the top of this car early Friday along the 4700 block of St. Mary's Church Road near Lucama.

Drew C. Wilson | Times

A fallen tree crushed the top of this car early Friday along the 4700 block of St. Mary's Church Road near Lucama.

Zachary Wilder and Brent Tharp clean up wires in front of a single-wide mobile home where the roof was ripped off in Friday morning's storm on the 5300 block of Bass Road in Lucama.

Drew C. Wilson | Times

Zachary Wilder and Brent Tharp clean up wires in front of a single-wide mobile home where the roof was ripped off in Friday morning's storm on the 5300 block of Bass Road in Lucama.

Lucama Board of Commissioners members David Johnson and Judy Mason ride a golf cart past a downed tree Friday on Main Street.

Drew C. Wilson | Times

Lucama Board of Commissioners members David Johnson and Judy Mason ride a golf cart past a downed tree Friday on Main Street.

A fallen tree crushed the top of this car early Friday along the 4700 block of St. Mary's Church Road near Lucama.

Drew C. Wilson |Times

A fallen tree crushed the top of this car early Friday along the 4700 block of St. Mary's Church Road near Lucama.

Jennifer Lamm carries branches from a Bradford pear tree that was damaged in her yard. She, husband Dale and daughter Madison helped clean up debris from Friday morning’s storm on St. Mary’s Church Road near Lucama.

Drew C. Wilson |Times

Jennifer Lamm carries branches from a Bradford pear tree that was damaged in her yard. She, husband Dale and daughter Madison helped clean up debris from Friday morning’s storm on St. Mary’s Church Road near Lucama.

A car pulls into a driveway along Spring Street in Lucama where a tree dangled from power lines after Friday morning's storm.

Drew C. Wilson | Times

A car pulls into a driveway along Spring Street in Lucama where a tree dangled from power lines after Friday morning's storm.

Workers from the town of Lucama cut up a large tree that fell on a power line during a violent storm Friday morning.

Drew C. Wilson |Times

Workers from the town of Lucama cut up a large tree that fell on a power line during a violent storm Friday morning.

A fallen tree crushed the top of this car early Friday along the 4700 block of St. Mary's Church Road near Lucama.

Drew C. Wilson | Times

A fallen tree crushed the top of this car early Friday along the 4700 block of St. Mary's Church Road near Lucama.

Zachary Wilder and Brent Tharp clean up wires in front of a single-wide mobile home where the roof was ripped off in Friday morning's storm on the 5300 block of Bass Road in Lucama.

Drew C. Wilson | Times

Zachary Wilder and Brent Tharp clean up wires in front of a single-wide mobile home where the roof was ripped off in Friday morning's storm on the 5300 block of Bass Road in Lucama.

Zachary Wilder and Brent Tharp clean up wires in front of a single-wide mobile home where the roof was ripped off in Friday morning's storm on the 5300 block of Bass Road in Lucama.
Lucama Board of Commissioners members David Johnson and Judy Mason ride a golf cart past a downed tree Friday on Main Street.
A fallen tree crushed the top of this car early Friday along the 4700 block of St. Mary's Church Road near Lucama.
Jennifer Lamm carries branches from a Bradford pear tree that was damaged in her yard. She, husband Dale and daughter Madison helped clean up debris from Friday morning’s storm on St. Mary’s Church Road near Lucama.
A car pulls into a driveway along Spring Street in Lucama where a tree dangled from power lines after Friday morning's storm.
Workers from the town of Lucama cut up a large tree that fell on a power line during a violent storm Friday morning.
A fallen tree crushed the top of this car early Friday along the 4700 block of St. Mary's Church Road near Lucama.

dwilson@wilsontimes.com | 252-265-7818

LUCAMA —  Zachary Wilder was awakened at 1:15 a.m. Friday by the sound of golf-ball-sized hail as wind ripped off the roof of his home.

Wilder, wife Logan and 2-year daughter Remington were asleep in their Bass Road home when a violent wind storm swept through.

“I felt the house. It sounded horrible,” Zachary Wilder said. “I woke my wife up and I said, ‘Will you go to the bathroom with me?’ I was scared. It felt like the whole trailer was rocking. You could hear stuff flying off of it bad.”

The couple ran to the other side of their home to get the baby. 

“We scooped her up, and it sounded like it was calming a little bit, so we went outside and jumped in the car and left. It was hailing real bad. It was beating it up. I was ducking and dodging it running to the car.” Wilder said. “When we were pulling out, we could see the roof of the house in the middle of the road. So it pretty much did what it was going to do by then.”

Logan Wilder’s father, Brent Tharp, helped clean up the debris Friday afternoon.

“They are lucky,” Tharp said. “We have got water damage, but we can replace everything. Thank God it wasn’t a fire and nobody got hurt.”

With friends’ help, Tharp said the young family would recover.

“They have got good people surrounding them, so everything is going to be pretty good,” Tharp said. “People have even paid to have a storage unit to put their stuff in for right now.”

LUCAMA DAMAGE

Mayor Jeff Johnson said Lucama experienced widespread damage.

“In the Lucama town limits area, Spring Street from Main Street to Hill Street, Campbell Street from Main Street to Goldsboro, Blalock from Main Street to Spring Street where they fork together, several trees were down. A few trees in town fell on some property,” Johnson said.

Johnson said there was extensive damage on St. Mary’s Church Road in the Boswellville Road area with several trees and power poles downed. Little Rock Church Road had a few power poles down. The Lucama Elementary School baseball field lost one of its light poles.

Skyland Loop had several trees down across power lines.

“At this time, I am not aware of any injuries to the citizens or the utility workers assisting us right now,” Johnson said.

“I have been up since 1 o’clock this morning and haven’t stopped yet delivering food and drinks to the utility workers that came in to help us,” he added. “I appreciate their help very much. I expressed my gratitude earlier this morning several times.”

Johnson said the electricity was coming back on in phases.

“You have got to take your time working around electricity like this to make sure that everything is right before you switch everything back on,” Johnson said. “Right now is looking better from what it has been. There’s going to be a lot of yard cleanup to do in the area in the next week or so.”

WILSON DAMAGE

The overnight storm made a hard hit in the city of Wilson, mainly with Wilson Energy and Greenlight systems. 

Nineteen utility poles on Forest Hills Road were snapped, and the poles and power lines remained on the road between N.C. 42 and Downing Street early Friday morning as crews began work.

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

Additional utility crews from Greenville Utilities, Apex, Tarboro and Rocky Mount helped Wilson Energy with the restoration work on Forest Hills Road, according to Rebecca Agner, communications and marketing director for the city.

Officials closed Forest Hills Road from Downing Street to Tarboro Street as crews worked to repair the utility poles and power lines. Traffic backed up throughout the day as residents tried to travel along N.C. 42 at Forest Hills Road.

At the outage peak, 14,261 Wilson Energy customers were without power, Agner said. Power was restored to most customers before noon on Friday.

Greenlight had 1,300 customers out of service at one time. As of Friday afternoon, 225 Greenlight customers were still experiencing outages.

Agner said a large tree fell on Wilson’s Energy’s 115-kilovolt electric transmission line, which disrupted power to three substations on the western side of the electric distribution center. 

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