• 50°

Area Dodges Irene's Big Punch

FARMVILLE – The area dodged a major bullet over the weekend when Hurricane Irene's havoc-wreaking strength swept past just to the east.

Less than an inch of rain fell in Farmville, with gusting but not destructive winds throughout Saturday, while in the Richmond area hundreds of trees were toppled by far stronger winds, damaging homes and power lines.

Thousands to the east remain without electricity. Some won't see power restored until Friday, according to Dominion, which had returned electricity to half of the 1.2 million affected customers by Monday

Rainfall was also far heavier to the east than the .88 of inch measured over the weekend at WFLO, the National Weather Service's official cooperative observer. Six to eight inches fell in the Richmond area.