June 22, 2024

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Poolesville tornado damage could have been worse, residents say

3 min read

The President of the Poolesville Town Commissioners says the storm took everyone by surprise.

POOLESVILLE, Md. — Multiple tornado warnings were issued covering parts of Virginia and Maryland Wednesday, and at least two twisters were confirmed in Montgomery County. Milton Andrews, who lives on Whites Ferry Road just outside Poolesville, has damage all over his property from one of those storms. 

“When it hit my property and took out some fence and trees over on the west until it went all the way across and took out all this stuff over on the east side,” Andrews said.

As the storm picked up, he said he went to take cover in the basement when he heard someone walk in his house.

“Two people came in the front door and started yelling,” Andrews said. “A mother and her daughter were on their way home. They just said, ‘can we stay here? There’s trouble.’ I said sure, come on in.”

Andrews invited the strangers downstairs, inside a concrete room.

“I think it’s safe to say that they were scared, and they were very happy that I actually had a safe room,” he said.

On Thursday, cleanup crews worked to remove downed trees along Whites Ferry Road in front of Andrews’ property.

“No one really remembers ever seeing anything like that here,” said Jim Brown, the president of the Poolesville Town Commissioners.

Brown said the tornado took this community by surprise. 

“All this had to do was be a thousand feet in another direction and we would’ve had houses wiped out by it, we would’ve had communications down, etcetera,” Brown said. “We’re going to publish a little more and be up front with what we need to do.”

Brown said he’s spoken with state and county leadership, including the governor’s office, to come up with a better action plan. 

“We dodged a bullet, but it is going to serve as a reminder that we’ve got to be as prepared as we can be and we’re going to let all of our resident’s know that,” Brown said.

Andrews is one of many that’s thankful this wasn’t even more disastrous.

“It could always be worse,” he said. “The house could’ve collapsed down around us.”

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2024-06-06 21:18:33

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