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Storm Damage

A storm knocked a tree down at a Russell Street home on Friday, cutting off power.

Six adults and four children were living without power at their Russell Street home after a storm knocked a tree down, ripping the home's utility box away from the residence.

Matthew Pinckney, who was at the house during Friday’s storm, said the wind began to pick up but it was not all that bad.

The tree beside the residence was not up to the challenge.

"The tree was pretty rotten," Pinckney said. "It fell down. It was all over there. It tore the meter box and everything off the house."

Pinckney said the power was cut off immediately to prevent a fire hazard. He said an electrician has already put another box up.

"We are waiting for (the Department of Public Utilities) to run the wire back," he said Tuesday. "There is no air. No food. All of it is gone."

"It has been hard sleeping and it is so hot," he said.

DPU spokesman Randy Etters said Tuesday afternoon the situation is common, but by law the utility cannot hook the residence back up until the electrician's work is inspected by the county.

"We can't put the power back to the house until it is deemed safe," he said. "It is for the customer's safety."

Etters said since the situation reached emergency limits, DPU crews would inspect the electrician's work and restore power by the end of Tuesday evening.

The American Red Cross assisted the family. The Orangeburg Department of Public Safety responded to the incident, according to the Red Cross.

For more information on how to help, visit redcross.org or call 1-800-RED-CROSS.

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Staff Writer

Gene Zaleski is a reporter/staff writer with The Times and Democrat.

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