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Archive for Saturday, August 19, 2006

Storm leaves damage in path

Farm, sorority house hardest hit as severe weather moves through area

August 19, 2006

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Maurice Woolsoncroft, who lives on East 1600 Road, picks up Friday after a storm hit his place early in the morning, scattering items around the yard, knocking out a few windows and taking the roof off his hay barn.

Maurice Woolsoncroft, who lives on East 1600 Road, picks up Friday after a storm hit his place early in the morning, scattering items around the yard, knocking out a few windows and taking the roof off his hay barn.

Maurice Woolsoncroft doesn't know whether it was a tornado, microburst or just high winds, but it sure jarred him awake and out of bed in a hurry early Friday.

"Yeah, I was startled," Woolsoncroft said, adding that the bedroom window was blown open, causing it to swing inward on its sashes. He was not hurt.

Outside, Woolsoncroft later found additional damage on his farm northeast of Lawrence at 1984 East 1600 Road. Part of his barn roof was gone. Two windows were broken out of the garage and the windshield on his pickup truck was damaged. Three trees also were blown down and a road sign was damaged.

Thunderstorms moved into the Lawrence area about 11:15 p.m. Thursday and continued into Friday morning. About midnight Thursday, lightning struck a power line near the Chi Omega sorority house, 1345 West Campus Road, knocking out power.

At 2 a.m., the sorority house director woke up and found smoke coming from the basement. The house was evacuated and firefighters were called.

"We stood outside until 4 in the morning," sorority president Mallory Hammersmith said.

The women later retreated to the Lawrence Holidome, where they spent the night sleeping on a ballroom floor.

The electricity and air conditioning were later restored and the house was reopened. No one was injured in the incident.

The National Weather Service in Topeka said it had no reports of tornadic or microburst activity in Douglas County or anywhere else in Kansas, despite the storms. There were 50 mph straight-line winds reported in Nemaha County.

At Lawrence Municipal Airport, 0.18 inches of rain fell during the storm, 6News meteorologist Matt Sayers said.

"There were absolutely no severe storm reports around here," Sayers said.

But don't tell that to Woolsoncroft.

"You couldn't hear anything," he said of the wind storm that struck his place. "There was no howling, just the crashing."

There is a chance for more rain this morning before becoming partly cloudy this afternoon, according to the weather service and Sayers. Today's high is expected to be 84.

Comments

Richard Ballard 8 years, 4 months ago

Well, I don't know about the National Weather Service, but over here near the Holidome, we had one heck of a wind. Almost had to be a Micro-burst. I thought the roof on my house was going to go when it hit.

A BIG tree went down on my neighbors house, and we had tree limbs and small branches littering yards all over the block.

rcmodel

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