Saturday, April 16, Eyewitness News at 6

10:43 AM, Apr 11, 2011   |    comments
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William Boswell "Within seconds I looked out and the wind had kicked up from zero to sixty and could see things swirling around the yard"
"I'm just worried about where am I gonna live and what's going to happen now, because my house is torn up"
SOME PEOPLE IN BIBB COUNTY WOKE UP TO SNAPPED TREES... FALLEN POWER LINES... AND DAMAGED HOMES... AFTER A STORM BLEW THROUGH THIS MORNING.
GOOD EVENING AND THANKS FOR JOINING US. 
I'M BOFTA YIMAM.
THIS IS EYEWITNESS NEWS AT SIX.


GEORGIA POWER SAYS BIBB HOMEOWNERS WITHOUT POWER... MAY BE IN THE DARK UNTIL TOMORROW NIGHT.
THEY SAY THIS MORNING'S STORM... CAUSED DOWNED POWER LINES.
Pause for nats=3 SEC 
(sound of chainsaw)
CREWS SPENT THE DAY WORKING TO GET RID OF THE FALLEN TREES.  
OFFICIALS SAY THE STORM HIT SOME OF THE COUNTY'S NORTHERN PARTS THE HARDEST.
STORMS ROLLED THROUGH THE AREA JUST BEFORE SIX A-M.
DOZENS OF TREES DAMAGED HOMES IN NEIGHBORHOODS ALONG FOREST HILL ROAD.
SOME TREE TRUNKS SNAPPED IN HALF---DEBRIS AND LIMBS ALSO BLOCKED SEVERAL ROADS.
FALLEN TREES SPLIT THIS NORMANY ROAD HOME NEARLY IN TWO... NEIGHBOR WILLIE BYRD DESCRIBES THE SCENE-- 
Willie Byrd, Bibb County: "We first jumped up, that's when the first tree hit the house, so we got up and ran downstairs and another limb it fell through the house, by the time we got to the bottom of the step another piece of the tree broke off and went through the front door"
GEORGIA POWER SAYS ONE-THOUSAND CUSTOMERS ARE WITHOUT POWER IN NORTH MACON.
THE SAY SOME OF THOSE CUSTOMERS COULD BE WITHOUT ELECTRICITY UNTIL TOMORROW NIGHT... SINCE CREWS HAVE TO CLEAR AWAY FALLEN TREES IN ORDER TO GET INTO THE NEIGHBORHOODS.
THE RED CROSS OF CENTRAL GEORGIA IS INTERVIEWING FAMILIES... TO FIND OUT HOW MANY... NEED EMERGENCY SHELTER. 
DIRECTOR OF EMERGENCY SERVICES LATRAVIUS SMITH...SAYS EARLY REPORTS SAY STORMS DAMAGED... ABOUT 20 HOMES IN NORTH MACON. 
SHE SAYS THEY PLAN TO OFFER MEALS TO PEOPLE AFFECTED BY THE POWER OUTAGES... STARTING AT 6-30 TONIGHT.
ANYONE WHO NEEDS RED CROSS HELP CAN CALL THEM AT 478-743-8671... AGAIN THAT'S 478-743-8671.


STRONG WINDS ALSO RIPPED OFF PART OF THE ROOF OF A HOTEL.. ON RIVERSIDE DRIVE.
PEICES OF TWISTED METAL... AND COLLAPSED COLUMNS... LIE IN THE DAYS INN PARKING LOT.
  PARTS OF THE BUILDING LANDED JUST FEET AWAY FROM GUESTS' ROOMS... AND DEBRIS SHATTERED A CAR'S REAR WINDOW..
WINDS APPEAR TO HAVE BLOWN OUT A WINDOW IN THE HOTEL'S LOBBY.
GUEST GARY SMITH SAYS HE COULD HEAR DEBRIS AND TRASH CANS BEING BLOWN AROUND OUTSIDE... WHEN HE WOKE UP EARLY THIS MORNING.
HE SAYS THAT'S WHEN HIS DAUGHTER TOLD HIM TO LOOK OUT THE WINDOW...
Gary Smith, Douglas: "It looked a funnel was right over between the parking lot, it was a real black cloud, at day break"
Lizzie Smith, Douglas: "I seen it in the window and my daddy came out and seen it"
Ashley Denmark, Douglas: "I thought a tree fell down but it wasn't a tree. It was the building."
GARY SMITH SAYS THE DARK CLOUD LASTED ABOUT TEN MINUTES.
A HOTEL WORKER SAID ABOUT 30 PEOPLE WERE STAYING THERE WHEN THE STORM HIT. 
HE SAID NO ONE REPORTED BEING HURT.


ONE FAMILY LOOKED OUT THE WINDOW AFTER THE STORMS THIS MORNING... AND FOUND THAT TREES HAD FALLEN ON THEIR HOUSE.
           CANDACE ADORKA SPOKE WITH DANA AND ROSS ADAMS... WHO SAY DESPITE THE DAMAGE... THEY'RE DETERMINED TO MOVE ON.<<
***nats of wind chime***


ALL WAS CALM LATE SATURDAY MORNING AT THE ADAMS HOME ON WESLEYAN WOODS DRIVE... BUT JUST HOURS EARLIER....

ross adams "two large pine trees on the house, two large pine trees on the grounds, wiped out the magnolia tree..."


THE STORM DAMAGED THE ADAMS' FRONT ENTRANCE AND ROOF.... 


"you can see the insulation here thats comign down from the ceiling..."
 
ROSS ADAMS WAS OUT OF TOWN WHEN TORNADO SIRENS WENT OFF... BUT HIS WIFE AND TWO CHILDREN WEATHERED THE STORM IN THEIR BASEMENT.


"my oldest who's 20 is a special needs child so he was out of his routine, he did not want to be down there and to get my three year old to stay and be calm.... it was interesting."


HE SAYS THEY HEARD A NOISE... BUT DIDN'T THINK MUCH OF IT.... UNTIL THEY VENTURED BACK UPSTAIRS. 


"i just happened to look out my window and i saw a tree branch." 


"I'm just happy my family is safe, that's the most importnat thing. Trees can grow and my house can be fixed." 


standup: "the adams family is thankful for one more blessing-- their daughter's play house is safe. Ross Adams says had that tree fallen just a few feet over, countless hours of hard work would have been destroyed."


"i built it myself, my dad helped me.... I wanted it to be a cool place to bring her and her friends..."


DESPITE THE DAMAGE... THE FAMILY SAYS LIFE GOES ON... THEY PLAN TO HAVE THEIR DAUGHTER'S THIRD BIRTHDAY PARTY SUNDAY... AT THE PLAYHOUSE...


CANDACE ADORKA 13 WMAZ EYEWITNESS NEWS. 
THE ADAMS SAY THEY REPLACED THEIR ROOF EARLIER THIS YEAR AFTER A DECEMBER HAIL STORM DAMAGED IT. 


YOU MAY HAVE NOTICED CREWS CLEANING UP IN OTHER PARTS OF THE COUNTY... LIKE THE RIVOLI NEIGHBORHOOD.
WORKERS SPENT THE DAY REMOVING SNAPPED TREES... AND DOWNED POWER LINES.
WILLIAM BOSWELL SAYS HIS FAMILY WOKE UP TO FIND A TREE--- IN HIS CEILING.
<<
"it was calm, very calm and it was amazing at how immediate it was when it hit."


WILLIAM BOSWELL SAYS HE AND HIS FAMILY WERE ASLEEP WHEN A STORM...  RIPPED THROUGH HIS RIVOLI NEIGHBORHOOD..
HE SAYS HIS WIFE ALERTED HIM AROUND 6--A-M... AFTER HEARING THE SIRENS.


i just jumped up ... getting dressed getting the kids ready to vacate if necessary and go down into the basement."


BOSWELL SAYS HE LOOKED OUTSIDE.. IN AWE--
 "could see the wind had kicked up from 0 to 60 and could see things swirling around yard."


THE FATHER OF TWO SAYS THEY RAN OUT THE BACK DOOR...  TO THE BASEMENT ... HE SAYS THEY MADE IT SECONDS BEFORE BRICKS ON HIS WALL... STARTED TO FALL.
NATS "that's exactly when we were standing where that chunk of brick was."


 THE MACON NATIVE SAYS THE STORM TOOK HIM BY SURPRISE--
"when they made that announcment of weslyan woods and showed the cell right over the area, it was still relatively calm."


BROSWELL SAYS THE STORM SPARED MOST OF HIS HOME... BUT THE TREES  CAUSED DAMGED TO TWO BEDROOMS... .LEAVING RUBBLE.. DEBRIS... AND DOWN POWERLINES.


(NATS OF SAWING)


BROSWELL SAYS HIS FAMILY WILL WORK TOGETHER TO PICK UP THE PIECES THE STORM LEFT BEHIND.... BUT  HE'S GLAD THEY STILL HAVE EACH OTHER.


"can't stay here you know, you're home's gone for however long but it is what it is ... there's nothing you can do about mother nature."


>> BOSWELL SAYS HE AND HIS FAMILY ARE TEMPORARILY STAYING IN A HOTEL. 


WHEN WINDS RIPPED THROUGH BIBB COUNTY'S OUSLEY STREET ... FOUR TEENAGE GIRLS.. INCLUDING SISTERS AND FRIENDS HAVING A SLEEPOVER...  SAY THEY WOKE UP TO SOUNDS OF RATTLING... AND CRASHING.
LAUREN DISPIRITO EXPLAINS... AS THE STORM TORE UP THEIR HOME... THE GIRLS SAY A SPECIAL FORCE---KEPT THEM SAFE.
Cheyanne Hamilton, Bibb County: "Get on the ground get on the ground"


FIFTEEN YEAR OLD CHEYANNE HAMILTON REMEMBERS WAKING UP TO HER SISTERS SCREAMS...


Cheyanne Hamilton, Bibb County" I was like there's a tree falling there's a tree falling
Hope Kearnes, Bibb County: "I was in the room with Cheyanne and she grabbed on to me"


A FALLEN FOREST.. AS HAMILTON CALLS IT.. NOW NEARLY HIDES HER OUSLEY STREET HOME. 


Cheyanne Hamilton, Bibb County "See the strings holding up the tree, all that would have fell"


SPLINTERED WOOD... A TREE TRUNK... SCRAPS OF INSULATION... THESE ARE THE REMAINS OF THE TERROR SHE AND FRIENDS FELT HOURS BEFORE... 


Nats "that's the door hinge"


BEFORE HAMILTON.. HER SISTER SIERRA.. AND TWO FRIENDS HID FROM RAGING WINDS.. HAMILTON SAYS SHE LEARNED SOMETHING SCARIER THAN THE SOUNDS JUST OUTSIDE HER WINDOW.


Cheyanne Hamilton, Bibb County "We didn't know what to do because we found out nobody was at home." 


HAMILTON'S FATHER... HAD LEFT THE GIRLS ALONE IN THE HOME... ON HIS WAY TO WORK.. BEFORE STORMS STRUCK


Nat "trees that were back there but flew up"


THE GIRLS MADE IT THROUGH... THEY SAY TREES LANDED IN NEARLY EVERY PART OF THE HOUSE BUT THE BEDROOMS THEY HID IN.


Cheyanne Hamilton, Bibb County  "where am I gonna live and what's gonna happen now..... 


THE DAMAGE SEEMS ENDLESS... BUT ONE OF THE FEW THINGS LEFT STANDING..  A PICTURE OF HAMILTON'S MOTHER WHO PASSED AWAY WHEN SHE WAS A TODDLER MAY BE A SIGN.


Cheyanne Hamilton, Bibb County: "It's just like she was there for us when we needed her the most"


LAUREN DISPIRITO 
13 WMAZ
EYEWITNESS NEWS


TRIPLE-A SAYS GAS PRICES IN MACON ARE SITTING AT THREE-71.
   "Our backs are up against the wall, and you are a God that can just show up at a moment's notice." THAT HAS A DUBLIN GROUP PRAYING... FOR SOME RELIEF AT THE PUMP.
     ABOUT A DOZEN PEOPLE CAME OUT TO THIS MORNING'S EVENT... LED BY PASTOR MARSHALL MABRY (MAY-BREE) OF BEACON OF LIGHT CHRISTIAN CENTER.
HE SAYS HE ORGANIZED THE PRAYER AT THE PUMP... TO GIVE PEOPLE IN DUBLIN HOPE-- DURING TOUGH ECONOMIC TIMES.
Marshall Mabry, Beacon of Light Christian Center: "People have gotten to a point in their lives where they feel hopeless.  They feel like the government has let them down, and I just remind them, even though you feel like the government has let you down, God has not let you down."
PASTOR MABRY SAYS HE HOPES TO START MONTHLY FIRST SATURDAY GAS PRAYERS... IN MAY.


FORMER MACON MAYOR C-JACK ELLIS KICKED OFF HIS CAMPAIGN THIS MORNING.  
ELLIS SPOKE TO THE GROUP ABOUT THE IMPORTANCE OF COMMUNITY... IN MOVING MACON FORWARD.
FOLKS GATHERED AROUND TO CELEBRATE THE RIBBON CUTTING FOR HIS FORMAL ANNOUNCEMENT.
ELLIS SAYS HIS PREVIOUS RECORD... SHOWS HE'S A LEADER.
HE SAYS HE PLANS TO FOCUS ON BUILDING JOBS... AND FIGHTING CRIME.
BUT ELLIS CALLED HIS TOP PRIORITY... TAKING CARE OF CITY WORKERS. 
Mayor C.J. Ellis
"We must look out for their welfare, we can't tell them we're just going to take all their insurance away, when we;ve made certain promises to them give them unsafe and unfair working conditions, hostile working conditions"
ELLIS ALSO SAYS HE WANTS TO TURN SOME AREAS WITH FEW HOMEOWNERS ON ONE STREET... INTO GREEN SPACE OR COMMUNITY GARDENS.--RATHER THAN REVITALIZING THEM.


      AS YOU'RE CLEANING UP DAMAGE FROM THIS MORNING'S STORMS... WE WANT TO SEE YOUR PHOTOS.
       YOU CAN SHARE THEM IN OUR GALLERIES AT 13WMAZ DOT COM.
       LOOK FOR PHOTO GALLERIES UNDER THE FEATURES TAB ON THE HOMEPAGE.
       DON'T FORGET... WHEN YOU ADD A PHOTO... WE WANT TO KNOW WHO TOOK IT... WHEN... AND WHERE.


   THANK YOU FOR JOINING US. 
   WE'LL SEE YOU BACK HERE FOR EYEWITNESS NEWS AT ELEVEN.
   FOR ALL YOUR NEWS... WEATHER... AND SPORTS 24-7... VISIT 13WMAZ DOT COM.
   WE'LL SEE YOU LATER.


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