Storm damage minimal

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, September 3, 2003

Although no warnings were issued for Covington County during Tuesday night's rough weather, there was scattered damage and power outages - including a house fire between Opp and Kinston that has left one elderly woman without a home.

"About 9:30 Tuesday night we got a call regarding a house fire at 875 Hwy. 342 (in Coffee County)," said Kinston Fire Chief Jimmy Daugherty. "When we arrived on scene, the house was fully engulfed in flames. We received assistance from the Ino and Opp Fire Departments, but the house was too far gone. We appreciate the help from Opp and Ino and wish we could have done more."

Daugherty said he believes the fire was caused by the weather.

"It appeared that the cause of the fire was due to a lightning strike," he said. "There was some pretty rough weather over here last (Tuesday) night. We're all lucky it wasn't worse."

In Covington County, the damage wasn't quite as severe, although one group of students was able to take a day off Wednesday.

According to officials with the Opp Utilities Department, a transformer at Opp High School was hit by lightning leaving the school without power, prompting school officials to dismiss classes for the day while utility crews worked on restoring the electricity.

Opp officials also reported some minor localized flooding between the Burger King and Movie Gallery on Perry Store Road, and near the high school.

In Andalusia, utility officials reported only one minor power outage in the back of the old pecan plant, but nothing else.

Covington Electric Cooperative also reported just a very few outages, with crews restoring power quickly to their customers.

Covington County E-911/EMA officials reported no damage throughout the county during the storm, and said that the county remained relatively quiet during the duration of the intense weather system.