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Tornadoes touch down in Johnson County causing widespread damages

Dozens of tornadoes spawned by a powerful storm system wiped out entire towns across the South, killing at least 200 people in the deadliest outbreak in nearly 40 years, and officials said Thursday they expected the death toll to rise.

In Johnson County, there are two confirmed deaths and according to Johnson County Sheriff Mike Reece, several individuals are still unaccounted for as investigators are conducting “well checks” in both the Butler and Doe Valley areas of the county.

General Power Outage update – Johnson County

MEC’s started getting hit around midnight with the high wind, severe thunderstorms, and a tornado that move through the area near our Pandora substation in Johnson County, TN. The tornado took out the feeder lines that supply power to the Butler and Shady Valley communities. There are many lines down in the general vicinity where the tornado was reported and scattered outages throughout our service area caused by trees and power lines brought down by strong winds and rain. As of 7 am, we had roughly 4,000 customers out of service. All of Butler and Shady Valley are without power. There are many lines that have yet to be inspected, so we do not know the extent of the damages. The earliest Butler and Shady Valley will have power restored is by late this afternoon. If additional damages are discovered, this may be longer. Some high damage areas will be without power for three days or longer.

Crews from our NC office will be assisting with the repairs in Johnson County. There are wide-spread outages throughout the TVA region, so getting outside assistance is difficult. We are seeking outside assistance from a neighboring co-op(s) in NC.

Several fatalities have been reported in Johnson County and more expected from several homes destroyed by the reported tornado.

Last night, TVA reported they had over 90 lines out of service (including twenty-five 500 kV lines). This is the most TVA system damage from a single storm system in its history. The primary damage is in Mississippi, Alabama, and parts of middle and east Tennessee, but has not impacted transmission service to MEC.