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TITUS’ TAKE ON THINGS: Reflections on Hurricane Florence’s impact

For the Heart of Virginia, last week was not one entirely unaffected by Hurricane Florence, though we can be grateful to have escaped the brunt of her force.

I have a friend who lives in Fayetteville, North Carolina, and friends who live in Greenville, South Carolina, so I was able to gain some insight into what the storm was doing down south compared to here.

While some forecast maps I was seeing showed Florence headed directly for Greenville, my friends there never reported experiencing much inclement weather.

As we know from national news reports, though, North Carolina was a different story. My friend there lost power, as did many, many others, and though thankfully his house wasn’t flooded, flooding was rampant in other residential areas and roads were also blocked.

Most tragic of all, as many as 43 people across North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia are reported to have died for reasons connected to the storm.

In the ramp up to the hurricane’s arrival on the east coast, there were times where it looked like it was headed directly for us in central Virginia and that we were indeed looking at the worst case scenario. As it got closer, that forecast changed significantly. Rather than hit Thursday, Sept. 13, the storm was then going to arrive Friday, Sept. 14, then Saturday, Sept. 15. Ultimately, we experienced the strongest effects Monday, Sept. 17, and they weren’t strong at all compared to areas north and south of us.

I expected some of the heavy rain and wind, but I did not anticipate talk of cyclones and then tornado warnings here and the actual touchdown of nine tornados in Richmond and its surrounding areas and one in Mecklenburg County.

A tornado warning briefly interrupted our workday at Farmville Newsmedia in downtown Farmville on Sept. 17, sending us downstairs to the press room as a precaution until the warning period was over. We were showed where we would need to huddle down there if tumult arrived outside, but thankfully, no tornado came.

Though there was great devastation elsewhere, it has been encouraging to see people from our area rally together and bring aid to those who need it so much right now.

Let us hope and pray that the worst of hurricane season has passed both for the Heart of Virginia and everyone else.

TITUS MOHLER is the sports editor for The Farmville Herald and Farmville Newsmedia, LLC. His email address is Titus.Mohler@FarmvilleHerald.com.