March 16, 2008
NORTH AUGUSTA, S.C. - The Storm Prediction Center estimates Saturday's storms produced 33 tornadoes across Alabama, Georgia, South Carolina and North Carolina.
More than 10 tornadoes touched down in the CSRA.
The storm started in Alabama around 3 o'clock on Saturday afternoon.
It hit the CSRA first in McCormick County during the late afternoon and early evening. Trees are reported down on Highway 81 in Willington. Golf ball sized hail was also reported.
Edgefield County had a possible tornado touchdown on Highway 378W near the McCormick County line. A number of trees and power lines fell down on houses in the area.
Jefferson County had several tornados reported by the public. Wrens saw possible tornado damage to church, several businesses, massive power outages and trees down. Georgia Power is still working in the area today trying to restore power. 400 employees have been dispatched to Jefferson County and contractors are asked to stay away right now because power lines are still in the road and the area has not been given the all clear by Georgia Power.
Matthews, in Jefferson County, also had reports of a tornado according to the Storm Prediction Center. An unknown number of mobile homes were damaged in this area.
Keysville in Burke County also saw a possible tornadoes. The Sheriff's Office reported large trees down and hail near road 305 South of Keysville.
Aiken County saw possible twister damage in North Augusta, Clearwater, Belvedere, Bath, Graniteville and Warrenville. The local fire department reported to News 12 touchdowns off of Briar Patch Road and Pine Log Road. Highway 421 was also heavily damaged with debris, but was since reopened as of 2 o'clock this afternoon (March 16).
The storm system also spurred possible tornadoes in Orangeburg SC, with a touchdown reported in downtown Branchville, damaging a fire station on Sairy Street. Emergency dispatch says a number of commercial business and homes were damaged or destroyed in the town of Branchville.
Blackville, in Barnwell County, also reported a tornado touchdown that continued eastward to Branchville.
Denmark, in Bamberg County, also reporting possible tornadic activity with trees down in the downtown area of Denmark.
Hail reports were issued by the Storm Prediction Center in Wilkes County, Columbia County, Burke County, Warren County, Jefferson County, McCormick County, Saluda County, Edgefield County, Barnwell County and Aiken County.