By ROBERT S. MERRILL
Winds, rain and dust caused some damage and power outages on Tuesday afternoon across Franklin County.
Probably the most significant damage was caused at the Franklin City Cemetery where at least six mature pine trees were blown over. The gate to the cemetery was locked Wednesday morning.
Cemetery Sexton Val Dean Durrant, who has been overseeing the cemetery for over 14 years, said wind has taken down trees there before.
“But we’ve never had anything quite like this. We had six 50-foot-plus pine trees uprooted. There were two others that had the tops snapped off. Most of these trees are at least 50 years old,” he said. “We plan to start cleanup operations on Thursday morning. The cemetery will be secured with locked gates until we can make things safe.”
Franklin County Sheriff Dave Fryar said his department responded to two power pole fires Tuesday evening to assist the fire department. “We had a report of a wire across a road in Banida, which ended up being an old telephone line,” he said.
County Commissioner Scott Workman said power went out at his farm in Treasureton about 4:30 p.m. on Tuesday and remained out for one hour and 45 minutes. There were reports of other scattered outages on the west side of the county, he said.
“I know we have had damage to several wheel irrigation lines that were blown around in the wind, estimated at over 50 miles per hour. There was one barn north of Preston, in the Riverdale area, that received significant damage,” he said.
The Franklin County Fire Department responded to three power pole fires Tuesday evening.
“Two of these were in Dayton and one was in Preston. I don’t know the extent of damage to the poles. But the fires were caused by a combination of wind, dust and rain,” said Scott Martin, Franklin County fire marshal.
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