News 12 First at Five / Thursday, June 16, 2011
AUGUSTA, Ga. -- Snapped trees, gnarled power lines, and lots of workers are dotting neighborhoods all over Richmond County tonight. The storm that swept through the CSRA Wednesday evening left frustrating path. Ron Golden lives on Overton street and was watching from his porch as a tree fell into his front yard. He witnessed it ripping through power lines on its way down. He explains, "I'm standing here watching this wind, and it's like a vortex going around, whippin'. Bout that time I heard a noise- crack!- a cracking noise. And then the pine behind me fell."
Meanwhile, several apartments in River Glenn off East Telfair Street were blocked by a huge tree that fell right in front of residents' front doors. Brandi Jones was startled by the falling debris. She says,"The branch went through the window and that could have really really hit somebody. What if a little kid was sitting at the window looking at the rain and it just shattered?"
Georgia Power reported over 19,000 people in the Augusta and Evans area without power Thursday morning. Power is expected to return by midnight Friday. They have brought in more than 400 workers from other states to help with the clean up.
Rodgers Gentry is Outdoor Plant Technician with AT&T. He was out early untangling cables on Gardner Street, trying to restore telephone lines and cable. He explains, the process can take up to five hours at each location. He says customers realize they need to be patient. "AT&T has to wait for the power company to do theirs first, then wait for the tree
service to cut the trees out of the way so we can do our work."
His best advice is to be careful around fallen power lines and never pick up a line on the ground, even if it's draped across your yard or street. It could be "live" with dangerous power.
While no injuries were reported in Richmond County, there are still pockets of power outages. Mr. Golden is one of those people without air conditioning any electricity at all. He called the power company this morning. "They said they were doing all they could. They've got crews coming in from Atlanta." His main concern- their fridge full of groceries and meats he doesn't want to spoil.
There are other stormy spots in the county to watch out for as crews continue to clear the roadways. Warren Road, Milledge Road, Walton Way, Wrightsboro Road, and parts of Washington Road still had debris in the way and power outages in some spots. For people like Mr. Golden, help can't come soon enough. "We're gonna ride it out and see what happens. We hope somebody will show up and start doing something!"