Thousands without power in York, Chester, Lancaster; trees and lines down

York County creek overflows banks in Fort Mill after heavy Sunday rain

Steele Creek overflowed its banks on Pleasant Road in Fort Mill Sunday as a result of heavy rains from Tropical Storm Florence.
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Steele Creek overflowed its banks on Pleasant Road in Fort Mill Sunday as a result of heavy rains from Tropical Storm Florence.

About 10,000 customers were without power Sunday morning, as overnight winds and rain from Tropical Storm Florence continued in York, Chester, and Lancaster counties.

Heavy rain continued to pound Fort Mill, Indian Land, Rock Hill, York and other areas Sunday.

Several trees and utility poles were down in the city of York, said Domenic Manera, York Fire Department chief.

A huge oak tree fell across East Liberty Street, near Georgia Avenue, blocking the street and snapping power poles and power lines.

The tree fell from the north side across the highway

Power and tree crews are sitting the tree into sections to try and remove it so that power crews can then put poles and then lines back up.

“We have a our main east west street blocked right now with Liberty Street closed so we have a mess right now,” Manera said Sunday morning. “We are waiting for Duke Energy to get in here before we can even get in there. It could take a while to get the lines out of the way and the road open.”

Other pockets of York also have downed trees and power lines, Manera said.

Nicole Sanchez and her four kids were okay, but their house on Ebenezer Ave. extension in Rock Hill, S.C., was not okay after a tree fell on it early Saturday morning, Sept. 15, 2018. The outer band of Hurricane Florence reached the area late Friday.

Rain is expected to continue through at least Monday with another 3 inches possible, said Trish Startup, spokesperson for York County. Saturated ground, and winds that are between 10 and 18 mph, means more trees may fall, she said.

On Sunday morning, Duke Energy reported more than 3,000 outages in York County and 3,500 in Lancaster County, with almost 1,000 in Chester County.

The city of Rock Hill utilities reported 1,330-plus customers without power.

Close to 1,000 electrical cooperative customers were without power, with most of those affected in Lancaster County.

The Rock Hill Fire Department responded to 13 Florence calls through Sunday morning, including multiple trees down on homes. No injuries were reported, said Mark Simmons, deputy fire chief.

Three people were displaced from homes after trees fell on houses on Mill Street and University Drive, Simmons said. Another home on Creek Bluff Road was damaged when a tree fell on the roof, Simmons said.

Trees fell on power lines across the city, including on Ebenezer Road, Catawba Street, and West Main Street, Simmons said.

Damage reports from overnight Saturday into Sunday included a tree on a roof at a residential car center in Lancaster County near Heath Springs. No one was hurt officials said.

The center did not have to be evacuated, officials said.

The tree smashed a hole in the roof, said Darren Player, emergency management director. Firefighters cut out the tree and put a tarp over the hole until repairs can be made, Player said.

Around Rock Hill, police and fire crews responded to seven downed trees, power lines in the road in two locations.

Chester County had two electrical transformer fires, but no one was injured in either incident, said Eddie Murphy, emergency management director.

There was localized flooding of low areas off Saluda Street in the city of Chester and a couple other areas near downtown but nothing that required any rescue efforts, Murphy said.

Chester County had several trees and power lines down around the county but no injuries were reported in those incidents, Murphy said. Officials expect utility crews to start restoration efforts Sunday, Murphy said.

“We got lucky so far,” Murphy said. “We didn’t have to make any rescues and we have no loss of life that we know of.”

Lancaster County had several trees fall on houses and power lines, down but no injuries were reported, said Russell Rogers, county fire marshal.

One mobile home was demolished by a tree, but emergency crews found that the trailer was unoccupied at the time.

Rain and wind continued Sunday morning but is expected to lessen during the day, officials said.

As of mid-morning, there was a flash flood warning in Lancaster County. Lake Wylie, dropped 2 feet in less than a week to make way for Florence rain waters, remains more than 4 feet below its spilling point.

Throughout the weekend, power crews have been able to make repairs. There had been concern among providers ahead of the storm that continued strong winds and flooding could mean inaccessible areas where repairs couldn’t be made for days.

A little after 2 p.m., York Electric tweeted that power had been restored throughout its service area.

Check back for updates on this developing story.

Andrew Dys: 803-329-4065
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