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Thunderstorm damages property, knocks out power

By KSL.com | Posted - Apr. 25, 2011 at 10:22 p.m.


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We want to hear from you. We have activated our beta comment board system while we are testing it. Please comment on the story and share your thoughts.NORTHERN UTAH — A thunderstorm afflicting the state Monday evening caused widespread damage across the Wasatch Front. Wind in northern Utah knocked down trees and tossed objects, and lighting struck s driveway in Payson.

"I had actually just taken a little nap," homeowner Kevin McDonald said, "and all of the sudden thunder just shook the whole house, knocked the pictures off the walls."

A California native, Kevin thought it was an earthquake. But Mother Nature had delivered something else.

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"The rain was coming down, but there wasn't much thunder or lightning," Briana McDonald said. "And then just out of nowhere there was a big pop and a flash."

Lightning had struck, leaving a large hole in the driveway of their Payson home. "We were pretty shocked to see a giant crater in the driveway," Briana said.

But that's not all. The thunder was so loud it blew out a window, the phone box and garage door opener.

"It blew dirt; in fact we have clumps of dirt back in the back of the house," Kevin said.

Wild weather also hit up north. During the Salt Lake Bees game, hail forced players and fans to run for cover.

High winds in Roy also wreaked havoc. The winds knocked over a tree, which then crushed an RV.

"Our neighbor called and told us about it. And then we came out and looked, and sure enough it blew it right over and (it) hit the RV," owner Chris Nye said.

Nye said he does have insurance that will cover the repairs needed on the RV.

The storm also caused power outages in Midvale and Grantsville Monday night. A Midvale outage that started at 7:21 p.m. affected 4,800 customers, Rocky Mountain Power reported. Another 800 went without power in Grantsville for a time.

But the storm is not done yet. A winter weather advisory by the National Weather Service in Salt Lake City that began at 5 p.m. Monday will last until 6 p.m. Tuesday. It affects the Wasatch and western Uinta mountain ranges, where snow accumulation is projected to be anywhere from 12 to 18 inches.

"Intense snowfall" rates are anticipated, with steady snowfall to continue through the night and into Tuesday morning, turning more "showery" by the afternoon.

Particularly impacted areas include Randolph and Woodruff in the north and Alta and Brighton.

KSL's Live 5 Weather forecast said valley floors could see a couple of inches of snow overnight, in addition to gusty winds out of the northwest on Tuesday. Expect strong winds out of the south in advance of the cold front and thunderstorm activity.

A freeze warning for southeastern Utah begins at midnight Tuesday and lasts through 9 a.m. Wednesday, affecting Blanding, Moab, Bluff and Mexican Hat.

The warning means sub-freezing temperatures are likely and will kill crops and other sensitive plant species.

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Story written with contributions from Sandra Yi, Amy Joi O'Donoghue and the ksl.com news team.

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