By Kerri Bartlett, Assistant Editor
Children took shelter in a dugout at Centennial High School, only for winds to rip the roof from over their heads.
The July 10, 2013, storm ripped the roof off the building that houses Holiday Wine & Spirits and State Farm Insurance in Franklin. Despite the damage and the mess in the parking lot, both opened for business this morning.
A severe thunderstorm wreaked havoc in a short, quick burst last night as it swept through Williamson County with gusts strong enough to sheer the tin roof from a retail building.
Numerous trees, power lines, and traffic lights were downed throughout the county.
“There were quite a few trees down around the county,” said Sharon Puckett, spokesperson for the Williamson County Sheriff’s Office. “However, there were no reported injuries.”
She said workers had cleared all trees and other road debris by morning.
“It was a busy night cleaning up the roads,” Puckett said.
Multiple accounts of property damage have been reported throughout the county.
According to the Franklin Police Department, the on-ramp on I-65 North from Murfreesboro Road was closed around 8 p.m. last night for an extended period of time due to power lines down on Murfreesboro Road.
A traffic light was also down at Murfreesboro Road and Center Point.
The storm came quickly while youth hockey players, not sponsored by Williamson County Schools, were practicing drills on an outdoor field at Centennial High School off Mallory Lane. They evacuated to a nearby baseball dugout for shelter when the roof of the dugout was then “partially” blown off according to witnesses.
“Two dugouts were damaged by straight-line winds,” said Jason Golden, WCS deputy superintendent and general counsel. “We are not aware of any other damage across the [school] district.”
The storm also took off the roof of Holiday Wine & Spirits, 112 Royal Oaks Blvd. around 8 p.m., according to Enrique Rodriguez, the store’s manager. Rodriguez was not present at the time.
According to Rodriguez, an employee had just stepped outside to run an errand when he saw the top layer of the roof blow off of the building and fall on a customer’s car in the parking lot. The customer was still sitting in the car at the time, but sustained no injuries, according to Rodriguez.
The wine and liquor store is open for business today.
“Last night a piece of tarp temporarily covered the hole to prevent leaks.
“We have a crew coming out today to finish repairs,” Rodriguez said. “There are minor leaks and no damage to the interior of the store.”
State Farm is also housed in the same structure.
“The firemen were here very quickly,” agent Anita Hendrix said. “This could have been so much worse. We are very blessed.”
Hendrix reported that there was minimal damage inside.
“Mark Willis, our neighbor who owns Daylight Deli and also a roofing company, said that he would put tarp on the roof for us.”
Shoney’s Restaurant located at 1306 Highway 96 in Franklin flooded and suffered a power outage between 7 and 7:30 p.m., forcing the restaurant to close early. However, with an early clean-up crew, the restaurant reopened this morning said Mike Taylor, general manger. The restaurant suffered exterior damage with a few trees uprooted and as well as a fence that was torn down.
“We have a landscaping company coming to clear out the trees today,” Taylor said. “We got here at 3:45 a.m., cleaned up and opened at 7:30 a.m. We are all cleaned up, serving and up and rolling.”
Derby Jones contributed to this story.
Posted on: 7/11/2013