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Storms Thursday brought 5.6 inches of rain

Tornado warnings, flooded roads, power outages resulted

FOOTHILLS—Thunderstorms and tornado warnings could likely not have come at a worse time Thursday afternoon. 

The tornado warnings began right as schools were letting out, just before 3 p.m. Both Polk and Landrum Schools held buses until after the warnings expired and Polk County had 200 people at the Tryon International Equestrian Center waiting for COVID-19 vaccines. 

Polk County Emergency Management Director Bobby Arledge said Friday morning that the area received 5.6 inches of rain from Thursday afternoon until Friday morning. 

Polk County Schools operated on a 2-hour delay Friday morning because of flooded roads throughout the county. 

There were also some power outages, including on White Oak Mountain and in Mill Spring. 

Arledge said Polk County Emergency responders helped Landrum officials with cars stuck on Hwy. 14 near the state line on Thursday night. 

There was a washout in the Hooker/River Road area, John Watson Road was flooded and Abrams Moore Road was flooded Friday morning and was going to be closed. 

Emergency responders also cleared a wreck on I-26 West Thursday afternoon that involved 4 vehicles during heavy rains. One lane was closed for a while Thursday afternoon but reopened later. A couple of people were transported to the hospital with injuries, according to reports. 

All area schools sheltered in place with students who were not able to be picked up prior to the tornado warnings. 

There were no tornados reported in the area, but tornados did touch down in Alabama and Georgia, killing 5 people in Alabama and injuring several in Georgia.