County dodges storms again, threat remains

By Bob Shiles

April 30, 2014

LUMBERTON — No severe weather damage was reported in Robeson County on Tuesday, but according to a national weather service meteorologist in Wilmington the county could still be in the way of thunderstorms.

Although the county has dodged for two days the worst of the severe weather that has moved across the South since last weekend, meteorologist Sandy LaCorte said this morning that severe weather still could pass through the county today and into tomorrow.

“It’s tricky to forecast,” LaCorte said. “It will be interesting to see how this plays out.”

There were no reported tornadoes in Robeson County on Tuesday, although at least five eastern North Carolina counties saw tornadoes, including one that was spotted near Durham, according to the National Weather Service.

The storm system, which barrelled through the southern and central United States over the weekend, has killed at least 35 people, including an 11-month-old who died after a tornado hit Beaufort County last Friday.

On Tuesday, tornado watch was in effect for parts of central and eastern North Carolina until 9 p.m., but was later extended until 11 p.m. Injuries and damages from Tuesday’s storm were limited, but widespread flooding has been reported around Fayetteville and Wilson, where stranded motorists had to be rescued.

LaCorte said that Robeson County could see some severe thunderstorms this afternoon and into tonight. There could be some damaging winds, heavy rains and hail, but unlikely any tornadoes, she said.

Rainfall at the Lumberton Municipal Airport was recorded at .32 inches on Tuesday.

Charles Britt, Robeson County’s general services manager, said this morning that he had not heard of any storm-related problems anywhere in the county on Tuesday.

“What I’ve been looking at this morning, we should not have any severe problems,” he said. “It looks like the chance of a tornado is only about 5 percent.”

LaCorte said that until at least noon on Thursday people in Robeson County should still be prepared for severe weather.

“Severe weather may linger into the (Thursday) morning. Don’t rule out severe thunderstorms, ” she said. “People should make sure to use all of the means possible to follow the forecasts and bulletins issued.”

There were some scattered power outages, but The Robesonian didn’t find any that were widespread.