Community Journalist Cathy Benson was on the scene of the storm front when it hit the Buchanan Carnival. She followed the advice of Kevin Myatt through his wife Community editor, Erica Myatt and drove to pick up her daughter who was with friends there. He warned Benson after she quizzed him on his Roanoke Times Weather Journal blog.
” I showed the text from the Myatts to EMS waiting by the entry way who called over Fire Chief Billy Joe Carter. Myatt had advised the carnival be closed. Carter allowed the band to finish playing their number and the lead singer announced for the crowd to go to their cars and wait to come back after the storm. But the storm hit quickly and with vengeance.”
Benson continued, ” I grabbed my daughter and we backed the car onto Lowe Street. These huge clouds of dust just spewed up from the carnival grounds and the wind whipped debris into the street. As we headed north towards the Copper Top a tree fell on either side of us. Limbs, even a flying umbrella from the Copper Top whizzed over the hood of our car. People were running and screaming. The power went out after the tree fell to our left.”
“My daughter was praying out loud. It was like a scene from a movie. We parked on Main Street until the storm subsided about 20 minutes later. Several rescue vehicles were on the carnival grounds after the storm but no one was apparently seriously hurt as none left for the hospital in the time we waited. The tree that almost got us was huge and was on top of at least one car. Buchanan was in darkness when we left 20 minutes ago. We came to a friends house in Daleville after passing through many downed trees only to find Tinkerview Gardens in darkness as well.”
Sheriff Ronnie Sprinkle told Benson that dispatch had plenty of calls about downed trees and damage from the storm in Botetourt County. More rain and storms may come through the area. Sprinkle advised people to be cautious due to downed trees and debris as they travel this evening.
Do you have a storm story or photos? firstname.lastname@example.org