Tornado touches down in George County

A George County man and his daughter escaped serious injuries when their truck was thrown off the road by a possible tornado that touched down in the Basin community on Tuesday morning. See additional photos on A-4.

   At least one small tornado touched down in southwest George County, smashing trees down on power lines and county roads shortly after 10 a.m. on Tuesday morning.

   “The wind was really whipping around, and I thought it was bad, worse than I had ever seen it,” said Diana Ladnier, who lives on Basin Central Road. “About that time I got a weather alert on my phone and looked out the window. Trees were already down in my yard and across the road. I really never heard it.”

   Ladnier and a guest in her home were uninjured.

   A Chevrolet pickup truck which was traveling down the road in front of Ladnier’s home was picked up and dropped on its top in a clear-cut area across the road from her house. The driver of the truck and a passenger, his daughter, were rushed to the hospital with minor injuries, according to Sheriff Keith Havard.

   “I am sure he must have at least had a broken hand,” Ladnier speculated. “They were really lucky.”

   Johnny Duncan, who lives nearby, said he was just taking out some trash when he heard the tornado coming. He took shelter and a tree came crashing down on his house. He was not injured.

   It was not immediately clear if it was one or two tornadoes, or if it was one tornado that touched down, lifted up and then touched down again. What is known is there was significant tree, roof and vehicle damage as far west as East Wilkerson Ferry Road stretching east to Wayne Lee Road near Agricola.  National Weather Service crews were enroute to make an assessment, according to county Communications Director Ken Flanagan.

   District Three Supervisor Larry McDonald was reporting lots of tree damage, moderate roof damage and vehicle damage caused by flying limbs, Flanagan said. Road crews were busy clearing away debris and electric utility crews were busy repairing downed power lines and restoring power to area residents.

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