A line of fast moving storms Thursday morning caused numerous power outages and downed trees as it raced through the Twin Lakes Area. At one time over 8,000 customers of North Arkansas Electric Cooperative were without power, according to coop spokesman Jerry Estes, and a lightning strike at the NAEC office in Mountain Home disrupted phone service as customers were calling to report power outages. At news time, nearly 3,000 customers including nearly 700 in Baxter County, remain without power.
In Mountain Home strong winds toppled a tree causing it to crash through a window at Panacea Day Spa. A transformer fire was reported in Gassville, a power line fire was reported in Oakland and a downed power line in Bull Shoals across from the Bull Shoals Tower caused traffic delays. Entergy Arkansas reported power outages in Mountain Home, Gassville, Lakeway, Bull Shoals and Midway. Baxter County Sheriff John Montgomery reported downed trees partially blocked a number of area highways.
The National Weather Service Office in North Little Rock reported over 600 lightning strikes in Baxter and Marion Counties during the height of the storm.
Winds as strong as 60 to 70 miles per hour were reported in Gainesville, Theodosia and Squires in southern Missouri. There were reports of trees blown down in Branson and Hollister and the Greenbriar Inn on U. S. Highway 76 West in Branson was evacuated when the roof of the building was damaged by a tree that was blown down by strong winds.
As of 5 p.m., 1.15 inches of rain had fallen at KTLO, Classic Hits and The Boot studios.
KTLO, Classic Hits and The Boot Weather Watcher Judy Young in Lakeway reported over an inch of rain in less than 45 minutes. Heavy rain was also reported in other parts of the region including three-quarters of an inch in Harrison in 38 minutes, and 1.26 inches in Flippin in 20 minutes.
The storm is responsible for at least two deaths; one in Lawrence County when a tree fell on a van and another in Jonesboro when a man was crushed when a tree fell on his home.
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