Broken Bones and A Microburst

So, I’ve been kinda quiet. Here’s why.
July 14th…the same day I fell while working out, hit my head, and fractured my wrist…we had a microburst here in town.
I was sleeping, enjoying that sweet, sweet sedative shot I had just gotten at Patient First. Such a sweet nap, I slept through the severe thunderstorm notification on my phone.
I woke up, and things were well underway. It was really like any other thunderstorm for a short while. I pulled a few things into the house with my one good hand…trying to clear my sedative-induced brain fog as I worked…but things were going downhill rapidly. This storm was getting its act together faster than I could work with one good hand.
I had a moment; I’ll go move the van. I do it every storm; there’s a tree that has been “sketchy feeling” for a while in the neighbor’s yard. I’ve had my eye on it.
And as fast as that thought came, I realized it was too late, and no longer safe. The storm was escalating; hail started striking the windows. SuperVan was on his own now.
What happened next is best described as “the sky opened up and laid the trees down”. The trees were mowed down by sheer force. The world went white. The power suddenly cut…I heard the crashing sound…
The top of an old sugar maple tree was ripped off next door and slammed downward…hitting the front end of my van, slamming into my house, cutting the power and internet.
This was the view when I opened my front door.
Oof. That’s not gonna buff out.
View from my office window….half of the tree top was now in my front yard.
I don’t know how, but it did not punch out my windows…
However, all my exits were blocked.  The front door was block my a tree.  Another tree fell and blocked the back of the driveway.
And the tree came down with such force live power lines were ripped out of the meters for both houses, landing them on my van.

Here’s my security camera footage from the storm before the power cut. The last 30 seconds tells the tale of how this storm rapidly organized and just destroyed things. Hail hits the house, then the sky opens up and the trees lay down.
The side door footage (which I did not post) shows normal shade and rain, then white bright sky around the van in the last few seconds…that’s the moment the tree was torn off the trunk and it went “airborne”.
The thing that is amazing is my mail lady had just pulled up to grab a package, and I was seconds away from going out to move the car. We both hesitated enough in acting on those ideas that neither of us were killed.
Another tree came down across the back of the driveway, effectively cutting off my exits from the house for 18 hours or so (the fire department offered to extract me, but you know me…I’m not leaving the kittens behind). And honestly, there were no “safe” exits for two days.
As anyone local to me knows, the whole area here looks like a bomb went off…the police set up their command center one block over and started closing roads. My neighbor’s house was actually in the news as far south as Richmond and Roanoke.
Here’s some other news and video links;

FLS Article

Richmond Times Dispatch article

My life has been like a D&D Quest since last Wednesday; beginning with cutting myself out of my house and making a small path, using a reciprocating saw, with my one good hand just to see some progress happen.
There’s a whole cast of characters I met along the way, just like in any good quest.
My house, amazingly, did not get any holes punched through it. The van had not one piece of broken glass.


Just wait for the rest…I have one hell of a story to tell ya. 😉

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *