Friday, June 14, 2013

Tree Downed by Storm

SmugMug Daily Link

We had one heck of a storm roll through the Raleigh, NC area yesterday.  They predicted 80mph winds and hail.  There were no reports of hail, and we didn't get much rain with it, but the winds were downright strong and scary.

I was about 30 minutes from home at a dental appointment for Joey, and the sun was shining brightly around 5:30PM, but I could see very dark skies to the west, and the MyRadar app I was using on my iPhone showed me that the storm was getting pretty close to the area.  I thought Joey and I could make it home before the storm, but I was wrong.  As we headed southeast to the house, the storm was barreling southeast too.  About half way home, the storm caught us, and boy did it catch us.  Leaves and dirt and other debris started blowing everywhere.  I was stuck in a long line of traffic waiting to go through a major intersection but not near any major building that we could take cover in.  Eventually we got through the intersection even though the traffic lights and power there were off.  I could have ducked into a local grocery store but decided the worst of the winds were past us.  Well, not really.  As we continued, the winds really picked up again and the trees were swaying everywhere.  It started to rain pretty good too.  Joey and I were both nervous and admitted that we were a bit scared, but stayed as calm as we could.  We were within 5 minutes of home when we came across a tree completely blocking Old Stage Road.  I had to turn around, and basically drive back into the storm, to use an alternate route to the house.  Thankfully we didn't encounter any other blocked roads.  I was never so glad to be home!

In our neighborhood, we had two trees down.  One landed harmlessly, and another on a dog pen.  What a relief.  However, we didn't know if Donnie's house was OK or not.

This morning as we drove over to Donnie's house, we saw many downed trees.  Sadly, one was through the middle of someone's home, some were across the street leading up to Donnie's house, and another just missed the restroom building at the local park.  We were nervous that there might be a tree on Donnie's house especially since the new roof is less than a month old.

As we drove down the 400ft. driveway, we immediately saw a huge, Donnie says 70ft. tall, oak tree across the driveway.  Wow!  First look at the house showed no issues.  Bummer but a relief.  Closer inspection of the house including going into the attic showed no damage to the house itself.  So relieved.

My daily shot is a pano I took of the downed tree using my iPhone.

Donnie got out his chainsaw and set to work to clear the driveway.  We didn't try to saw the whole tree up today.  We can do that on a cooler day when we don't need to be painting, but we did clear safe passage to the house.  Donnie also wants to pull maintenance on his chain saw before he tackles more of the tree too.

Nothing like a little storm excitement to stir things up.  I could have done without it.  My heart goes out to those effected by the storm.  As we watched the news, there were many reports of trees on houses and very sadly of a UNC student killed by a tree that fell on her as she walked down a sidewalk during the storm.

Here's hoping the weather settles down for the nation.  Seems like night after night there are just reports of floods and tornadoes and droughts on the news.

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