May 2011: Powerful storms damage homes, down trees, power lines


Posted on June 14, 2012 at 2:49 PM

Updated Wednesday, Oct 30 at 1:28 PM

SUFFOLK -- Thousands of customers, including 26 schools, were without power on Wednesday following last night's powerful storms.

Dominion Power says about 192,000 customers were in the dark at the height of the storm that had winds in excess of 80 miles per hour.   Officials said power may not be restored in some areas until 10:00 p.m. on Wednesday or late Thursday evening.

"We have bucket trucks and crews from Northern and Western Virginia territories are here to supplement our local crews. 260 bucket trucks are on the ground this morning, along with more than 1200 Dominion workers and contractors," said spokeswoman Bonita Harris.

Across Hampton Roads, people were cleaning up debris and clearing fallen trees and limbs from their yards.   Power lines fell and homes and businesses were damaged in the powerful storm.

One person died in the storm - Walter Amos, a worker at Norfolk Naval Shipyard in Portsmouth. A portal crane was pushed by strong winds into one of the portable buildings, pinning him between two portable buildings, officials said.

A release from Norfolk Naval Shipyard said those at the yard are "saddened by the death of our employee and our thoughts and prayers are with the family at this time."

Dominion Virginia Power reports the wind tore two holes in the nTelos Pavilion amphitheater in Portsmouth.

Five adults watching a baseball game at Landstown High School in Va. Beach were injured when a pole vault mat was blown into them.

An alert sent Tuesday night from principal Brian Baxter said, "Our school received minor damage and adult spectators attending the high school district baseball game, between Kellam and Salem high, received minor injuries. This incident occurred at approximately 4:30 p.m. when the game was called due to the approaching storm. The injuries were caused by high winds that lifted the pole vault pit, located near the baseball field. None of the injured were students or staff and the injuries were not life-threatening. I’m looking forward to seeing all students and staff tomorrow morning when school opens at 7:25. Thank you."

The Red Cross said volunteers provided food, clothing and lodging assistance to 10 adults and 4 children in Portsmouth and Va. Beach.

Officials said anyone whose home was damaged in the storm and needs help can call the Red Cross at 757-446-7762.