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Lincoln Herald | Lincolnton, NC

home : news : e-news August 9, 2022

4/21/2019 5:32:00 AM
It Was A Tornado
All photos by Lincoln Herald staff
All photos by Lincoln Herald staff
+ view more photos

Wayne Howard

Lincolnton was hardest hit, but there was also damage in Catawba County when a severe thunderstorm that the National Weather Service now says did in fact include a tornado struck Friday afternoon (April 19th).  The Weather Service said Saturday that a funnel cloud, although it appeared wider than some tornadoes, was spotted in northwest Gaston County south of Crouse at approximately 3:30 Friday afternoon and moved northeast into the Lincolnton area and eventually northward east of Maiden, losing definition as it went. It was officially categorized as a '0' strength (the weakest rating) tornado.

Several buildings suffered damage in the Maiden area; a line of trees was toppled near McKendree United Methodist Church; but nobody was injured. Power was knocked out for a time along Buffalo Shoals Road in Catawba County. The worst damage we learned about Friday evening was at a home on Buff Street in Lincolnton (off Park Drive behind Block Smith gym) where a large tree fell on two cars and the house. Facebook users posted photos of another house that was heavily damaged which they said was on Aderholdt Road.  A downed tree partially blocked East Main Street just east of Laurel St. and another totally blocked Laurel St. destroying a jeep parked on the street in front of a home.

The afternoon storm wasn't the end of the bad weather--or of storm damage.  Another thunderstorm with high winds struck Friday night knocking out power to much of Lincolnton.  Power wasn't fully restored until late morning on Saturday. 

We considered putting the warning out on the Lincoln Herald scrolling ticker at the top of our home page, but the storm was moving northward at 40 mph so it would have been in Catawba County before we could get it posted and likely our post of the warning would have been too late to do much good in preparing for the storm.

Those who had signed up for Emergency Alerts from the city of Lincolnton or Lincoln County or from Catawba County got text messages or emails or both warning them of the danger.  The Nationl Weather Service issued a Tornado Warning at 3:38 PM Friday. At that time, there were strong winds in the Lincolnton area and a thunderstorm that according to the Weather Service was "capable of producing a tornado." That it was a tornado wasn't confirmed by the Weather Service until Saturday.  

The storm helped to remind those who haven't already that they should sign up for the FREE emergency alerts. Lincoln County put out an emergency alert at 3:39 PM, just one minute after the NWS issued the warning.

Both Lincoln and Catawba counties provide an emergency notification and alert system to allow the public to be contacted by phone, text, and e-mail in case of a large-scale emergency. The system may also be used to let you know of important and urgent situations such as utility service interruptions, public water contamination, bridge collapse, etc. The message may also include information about where to go and what to do.

For information about the Lincoln County Emergency Alert System and to sign up for it, visit
If you live in Catawba County, you can sign up for that county's system at  For the city of Lincolnton Emergency Alerts, sign up at

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