A severe thunderstorm Thursday afternoon knocked down trees, cut power and damaged buildings across Calhoun County, emergency officials reported.

The storm damage stretched from Interstate 20, across the county to the Etowah County line, said David Randall, emergency manager for the Calhoun County Emergency Management Agency.

“We don’t have any injuries that I’m aware of,” Randall said.

In White Plains, the winds turned Donald Moszynski’s camping trailer upside down, lifted shingles off the roof of his house and damaged his truck, at some time around 2:30 p.m. when Moszynski was at work.

“My father-in-law saw things flying by, and being a good father-in-law and a good neighbor he came to check,” Moszynski said. “He was speechless.”
Elsewhere in White Plains, the storm tore the roof off a barn.

According to the Alabama Power Company, at least 11,600 customers in Calhoun County were without electricity around 3 p.m. By 6 p.m. workers had reduced that to 6,400 customers with another 2,600 in Cleburne still lacking power. Emergency radios were still crackling with reports of newly-discovered downed trees. The Calhoun County figure was down again to about 3,300 around 8:30 p.m. 

“We don’t have an estimated time of restoration yet,”  Jacki-Lyn Thacker Lowry, spokeswoman for Alabama Power, said.

Randall said the majority of the damage was downed trees.

“There are multiple areas with trees down and some roads blocked ... in Oxford and Anniston, all areas of the county,” Randall said.

Cleburne County Emergency Manager Crystal Cavender said there were numerous trees and power lines down from Heflin to the north end of the county.

Around 4:30 p.m, power was still out in much of Heflin. Both the city’s traffic lights were dark. People were standing outside stores such as Piggly Wiggly, waiting for lights to come back on.

Jonathan Gaddy, director of the Calhoun County EMA, said he expected no more dangerous wind Thursday, but there could still be flooding.

“The primary thing now is rain,” Gaddy said. “We want to discourage people from driving over possible flooded roadways and also from touching any knocked down power lines.”

Reporting by Patrick McCreless, Kirsten Fiscus, Bill Wilson, Stephen Gross and Tim Lockette.

Staff writer Patrick McCreless: 256-235-3561. On Twitter @PMcCreless_Star.

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