Michael reflective

Published 9:54 am Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Tropical Storm Michael brought heavy rainfall, flooding, downed power lines and downed trees at the intensity that few anticipated considering Hurricane Florence’s underwhelming track in the region.

The storm caused schools to close and the Lunenburg County Board of Supervisors meeting, including the work session between the county and two towns for its comprehensive plan, to reschedule.

Southside Electric Cooperative (SEC) cited that at the peak of the tropical storm’s impact in the region, 40,000 of the company’s service members were impacted, which amounts to roughly 70 percent of SEC’s system.

“Hurricane Michael created devastation across the majority of our service territory,” Jeff Edwards, SEC’s president and CEO said in a news release. “Hundreds of fallen trees created miles of downed power lines to repair along with approximately 100 broken poles. This is the worst damage I have seen in my 33-year career, with the exception of hurricanes Hugo and Isabel.”

Dominion said there were more than 600,000 customers around the state who experienced outages, amounting to the sixth largest outage in the company’s history.

SEC cited that crew members have discovered nearly 100 broken poles, hundreds of fallen trees and miles of downed power lines in the area.

Seeing and experiencing the damaging effects of the tropical storm is almost impossible to avoid. Many in the county continue to not have power, some have housing or vehicle damage, and some are taking detours as roads have closed.

We’re encouraged by the steps local government has taken to keep people safe by rescheduling meetings and classes. Stories continue to surface of goodwill deeds in the region, such as making hot meals for those affected by power outages or of the countless hours power linemen, first responders and road crew have sacrificed to restore normalcy in the county as soon as possible. To everyone who has taken a damaging and tragic storm like this and has responded by looking out for their neighbors, strangers, families and friends, we at The Dispatch commend you.