Sunday rains soak Franklin

Published 9:03 am Wednesday, May 26, 2010

FRANKLIN—Driving home at about 3:30 p.m. Sunday, Nazareth Holman Jr. came across a compact car submerged by water.

Holman soon learned that an unidentified woman and boy had escaped from the vehicle at the entrance to the Forest Pines apartment complex, which was flooded by the 1½ to 3 inches of rain that fell in Franklin, according to the National Weather Service in Wakefield.

“I was coming home from Applebee’s with my son and this car was stuck down there,” he said. “Nobody was in the car at the time.”

Three buildings were struck by lightning between 3 and 4 p.m. Franklin Fire & Rescue Chief Mark Carr said lightning caused significant damage to the attic of a house at 311 Barrett St.

“No one was home, but someone else saw the smoke,” Carr said. “The guys were really great. They got to the scene of the fire before it did much damage.”

Other structures hit by lighting included a vacant home at 300 Edwards St. and on Woodland Road in Newsoms. Damage was minimal in both, Carr said.

The amount of rainfall in the Tidewater region varied, said National Weather Service Meteorologist Bill Sammler.

“Close to Franklin, it was anywhere from 1½ to 3 inches,” Sammler said. “Up toward Smithfield they got a quarter-inch.”

Bands of the heaviest rain went from Elizabeth City, N.C., northwest through Franklin and up to Wakefield, where up to 3 inches fell, he said.

“The cities of Norfolk, Virginia Beach and Portsmouth and the northern half of Isle of Wight (County), generally speaking, got a quarter-inch or less,” Sammler said.