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Winter storm leaves one dead, causes downed trees and power lines in Tipton Co.

Published: Feb. 24, 2022 at 9:57 PM CST
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TIPTON CO., Tenn. (WMC) - Rain, sleet, and ice caused major issues and kept emergency crews busy in Tipton County.

Emergency officials responded to over 100 fallen trees, three vehicle crashes, and nearly 40 downed power lines. The Tennessee Highway Patrol is also investigating one weather-related death.

Wednesday, Tipton County residents were hit with showers and sleet.

“Once that had surpassed, overnight everything on the trees froze, which gave us an entirely different problem this morning,” said Tipton County Fire Chief Jon Piercey.

Thursday, fire, police, and public works officials responded to problems like downed powerlines and fallen trees, leaving hundreds without power like resident Jaylan Lewis. He left his house after the lights went out and saw some of the damage in his community.

“In my neighborhood, a couple of trees fell,” said Lewis. “They started cracking in my backyard. I had to get away. I had to go.”

Piercey says emergency crews responded to 108 fallen trees, three multi-vehicle crashes, and 38 downed powerlines.

“It was a task that we were prepared for but not physically prepared for because now, all of a sudden here we are twice in one month to get hit with some pretty good ice on the trees and issues like that,” said Piercey.

One fatality was reported on Beaver Road Thursday after a tree limb fell on a vehicle. The victim, 19-year-old Brandon Burkhalter, was the passenger of the vehicle and was struck when the limb entered the windshield.

Tennessee Highway Patrol is leading that investigation.

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