Coahoma Campus Suffers Damages From Saturday Storms
CLARKSDALE — The Coahoma Community College Campus felt the strength of a line of storms that pushed their way across the state of Mississippi on Saturday night. Straight-line winds, or downbursts, were reported at speeds of 60-70 mph and left destruction and death in their paths. Fortunately for the CCC family, no persons were injured, only property that was concentrated near the portion of campus that houses the college’s football stadium.
“That’s the best news about the storms for CCC,” said Public Relations Director Matthew Killebrew, “that our students were not on campus and were off for the Christmas holiday.
“After checking out the campus late Saturday evening with (Director of Building and Grounds and Maintenance) Mr. Jerone Shaw, it looks as if the damage is concentrated near the football field. There is some other damage but the heaviest damage is near and around the stadium.”
The roof of the James E. Miller Stadium’s concession stand was torn completely off its base, and damage to the doors of the Career and Technical Building body shop also sustained some damage. Fences were blown down and debris was littered throughout the campus, but there was no evidence of an actual tornado touching down.
Some of the best evidence of the power of the Saturday storms were the football stadium’s giant light poles that were located on the visitor’s side of the field. Two of them were bent 90 degrees at their base and draped backwards resting over the banks of Mackey Lake.
All power was lost on campus at one time, with the majority being restored last night with the rest expected to be restored today. Reports in Northern Mississippi had power outages to nearly 22,000 residents and nearby in Rena Lara, a man lost his life when his trailer home was blown over and he was pinned against a tree.
Many other reports filtered in last night of homes damaged, and property lost throughout Coahoma and surrounding counties. Another death was reported in Jasper County (west of Jackson, MS) caused by a tree limb falling onto a car. The driver of that vehicle was pronounced dead, with the passenger critically injured. A home in Tunica County was reported as “blown into the road” by local news stations and damage to homes, property were also reported in Bolivar County.
“Our hearts and prayers go out to the families of those that were affected by the storms this evening,” said Killebrew. “We will begin to better assess the damage to our campus (Sunday) and begin to move forward with clean-up and repair efforts.”
View pictures from the damage on Coahoma Community College's Facebook Page