A probable microburst from an afternoon storm Saturday left fallen trees on homes and power lines in Southeast Decatur and Priceville, and Decatur’s City Council likely will declare a state of emergency Monday.
Decatur Mayor Tab Bowling said the city is still assessing how many homes are damaged, particularly in the Hickory Hills subdivision area, but it’s enough the City Council will hold a called meeting at 4:30 p.m. Monday to declare a state of emergency.
The state of emergency allows the city to possibly qualify for federal and state emergency funds.
Three power poles broke on the east side of Point Mallard Parkway, creating a traffic jam.
Meteorologist Dan Dixon, of the National Weather Service office in Huntsville, said he “can’t say definitively” but it looks like this area of Decatur and Priceville was hit by a microburst.
“We can’t say definitively because we’re still investigating, but it usually takes 60 to 65 mph winds to snap a power pole,” Dixon said.
Dixon said this storm looks like it hit between 2:15 and 2:30 p.m.
Decatur Utilities reported about 1,600 customers without power in Southeast and Southwest Decatur. At about 8 p.m., about 500 were still without power, and DU reported it would be several hours before power to most homes would be restored.
At 10 p.m. Decatur Utilities workers and contractor employees were still working along Alabama 67 and in the Hickory Hills area to repair broken power poles and downed lines.
Graham and Penny Peebles, who live on the corner of Hunterwood Drive Southeast and Hickory Hill Road, said several homes in their neighborhood had damage from downed trees. They said a neighbor’s tree fell into their yard but didn’t cause any damage.
“Our next-door neighbors have about 15 trees down,” Penny Peebles said.
The couple said Hunterwood was blocked at one point until a bulldozer was brought in to clear the road.
Penny Peebles said on Hunterwood there was damage to “three (homes) we could see, but we didn’t go past where the trees were all piled up (on the road). Two or three (neighbors) have cars that have trees on them.”
Decatur Utilities said Point Mallard Golf Course will be closed today and Monday due to transmission lines that are down on parts of the course.