Aiken County damage reports, updated curfew restrictions

By: STAFF Email
By: STAFF Email

If you are in Aiken County and need help, call 803-641-4152.

March 15, 2008

AIKEN, S.C. -- Thankfully there are no reports of injuries in Aiken County after tonight's storms, but the county saw severe damage.

There are several reports of tornadoes touching down and extensive damage throughout Aiken County, in the Valley from Clearwater to Bath and Graniteville to Warrenville.

The fire department says a tornado touched down on Pine Log Road and on Briar Patch Road. A volunteer firefighter also reports that twisters may have touched down on Cherokee Drive and on Columbia Highway near Aiken.

State of Emergency

At 8 o'clock, Sheriff Michael Hunt declared a state of emergency for Aiken County and began enforcing a curfew across the entire county. He told News 12 the curfew will stay in effect for certain areas until 7 am tomorrow morning.

The county-wide curfew has been lifted, but the curfew does remain in effect for the areas of the 118 Bypass in Aiken - South to Highway 125 (Atomic Road). Also under the curfew is Pine Long Road to Ascauga Lake Road.

"Please, if you don't have to come in this area, go home," Sheriff Hunt said. "We are still searching for people, doing some damage assessments, make sure we've got folks accounted for. It would help us if you would get off the highways in the area."

Trees crush man's home

News 12 talked to a man who lives on Pine Log Road. Two huge trees fell on his house, one into his bedroom.

We also found several trees and power lines down on the roads.

Three funnel clouds

Sheriff Hunt said his office received reports of three funnel clouds, one which he said was confirmed by a deputy. The storms hit hardest in the Bath area, where the top of the Bath water tower was blown off.

The sheriff says the hardest hit areas from the storms include Bath and Clearwater Heights, which were described as "severe" and "major" by law enforcement. There roofs were reportedly blown off houses, houses were demolished in the Clearwater area, and power poles were snapped off "block after block after block", said Sheriff Michael Hunt. Areas also receiving damage, though not as bad, include the Midland Valley area, Graniteville, North Augusta, South Aiken, Monetta, & New Ellenton.

No injuries

As of 10 p.m. Saturday night, the Sheriff's Department had received no reports of injuries.

Bath without water

People in Bath were without water late Saturday night. Their water tower was hit by a tornado, and so was the Bath fire station. When the water comes back on Sunday, folks need to boil their water for ten minutes before they drink it.

Looting

Sheriff Hunt says there have been some reports of looting, but deputies will be on the lookout for that.

"I want to be very clear as a sheriff," Hunt said. "We will not put up with breaking into buildings or looting or stealing. We're going to put you in jail. Period. You're not going to take advantage of our citizens."

If you are in Aiken County and need help, call 803-641-4152.


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Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
  • by Taylor Location: Gloverville S.C. on Mar 16, 2008 at 07:31 PM
    Hey! I live in Gloverville, and our town was completly missed from the tornadoes. Me and my mom feel so lucky. and we send our prayers to the people that was hit.we live between warrenville and bath and i am glad that we were missed.
  • by leeddsd on Mar 16, 2008 at 03:18 PM
    I called the number for help listed. It goes to the red cross answering service. The lady who works there can't understand anything. I was just wanting to know about the curfew.
  • by D Location: Covington on Mar 15, 2008 at 07:52 PM
    Old Barnwell Road/Andrews Circle report; Many large trees down, several blocking the Circle, power has been out for hours and wind damage such as vents torn off roofs, trees on roofs, etc. Neighbors reported tornado funnel that passed above the area fortunately not actually touching the ground.
  • by Mark Redd Location: Wagener F.D. on Mar 15, 2008 at 07:23 PM
    We (Wagener F.D.) were aware of severe weather in the CSRA,due to TV coverage and computer monitoring,as we were manning our station. However we were never advised(by dispatch)of the extent of damage in parts of the county or that Sheriff Hunt had issued a county wide state of emergency and associated curfew. Chief Mark Redd , Wagener F.D.
  • by maurice Location: augusta on Mar 15, 2008 at 06:59 PM
    I work in Augusta will the roads be open on hwy 1
  • by News 12 Location: WRDW-TV on Mar 15, 2008 at 06:45 PM
    Aiken County is scaling back on the areas where they have the curfew... but they are not saying when it will end.

    We'll let you know when we hear something new.

    News 12

  • by Kim Location: Aiken on Mar 15, 2008 at 06:25 PM
    Trees and power lines down Near Southlawn Cemetery. The power is out in that area also.
  • by mark Location: pine butte lane nasc on Mar 15, 2008 at 06:24 PM
    winds knocked six trees in our back yard down partially damaging our storage building thank the lord the wind blew them away from our house instead of towards it.
  • by Lisa Location: Graniteville on Mar 15, 2008 at 06:11 PM
    When is the cerfew over ???
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