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Severe storms snap trees, down power lines

By Staff
STORM DAMAGE An uprooted tree rests on top of downed power lines Friday in front of the 46th Street home of Vance Grantham. PHOTO BY CARISA MCCAIN / THE MERIDIAN STAR
By Fredie Carmichael / staff writer
May 18, 2002
Torrential rains and strong winds swept through Meridian late Friday afternoon, snapping trees and knocking out power to more than 1,000 homes.
Broken limbs, downed power lines and other debris covered 46th Street, Country Club Drive, 10th Avenue and other roads in north Meridian around 6 p.m. shortly after a line of severe storms ripped through the area.
Vance Grantham was getting ready for his son's graduation when winds knocked down several trees in his yard. Grantham's son, J, graduated from Lamar High School.
Grantham's yard was covered with broken tree limbs. Winds uprooted a 40-foot-tall pine tree that once stood in the front yard, knocking it onto overhead power lines.
The National Weather Service in Jackson alerted residents about the weather; forecasters placed Lauderdale County under a severe thunderstorm warning from 5:15 p.m. to 6:15 p.m.
Kurt Brautigam, spokesman for Mississippi Power Co., said about 1,000 homes in Meridian were without power "at some point during the storm."
Mark Wilson, a National Weather Service meteorologist, said the storm was caused by an upper-level disturbance that moved through the state Friday.
Wilson said the storms dumped nearly an inch of rain on the Meridian and Lauderdale County area which has seen little significant rain in more than month.
For the year, 15 inches of rain has been recorded in Lauderdale County more than 10 inches below average.