Advertisement
  1. Breaking News

Thunderstorms, strong winds rip through Tampa Bay area as thousands lose power

In Clearwater, a tree blew down in the 1100 block of Norwood Avenue as severe thunderstorms came through the Tampa Bay area Sunday afternoon. [Photo courtesy of Clearwater Police Department]
In Clearwater, a tree blew down in the 1100 block of Norwood Avenue as severe thunderstorms came through the Tampa Bay area Sunday afternoon. [Photo courtesy of Clearwater Police Department]
Published May 5

Severe thunderstorms and raging winds passed through the Tampa Bay area Sunday afternoon, causing thousands to lose power.

The worst of the power outages happened in Hillsborough County. An early afternoon update from a Tampa Electric Co. outage map showed that as many as 28,000 Florida clients lost power Sunday, most of them in Hillsborough. By about 4:30 p.m., that number had fallen to a still-substantial 22,000.

Duke Energy also reported a smattering of outages across the area.

The strong winds in particular posed a safety threat all over the region. In Clearwater, the city's police department tweeted out updates about dangerous downed lines.

In Cypress Point Park in Tampa, the winds caused unusually high tides. Eric Defelice of the Tampa Police Department said Tampa saw no major flooding. However, deputies with the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office did spend some of the day clearing local roads of debris.

In Madeira Beach, winds were furious enough to rip down trees. Gusts even tore a screen off of a porch, according to Bay News 9.

Rick Davis, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service, said the sudden torrent of inclement weather came out of the Gulf of Mexico Sunday morning.

The system moved quickly in and out of the region. By the late afternoon, the worst of the weather had mostly subsided.

Contact Kirby Wilson at kwilson@tampabay.com or (727) 893-8793. Follow @kirbywtweets.

Contact Paul Guzzo at pguzzo@tampabay.com. Follow @PGuzzoTimes.

ALSO IN THIS SECTION

  1. The victim in Friday's shooting at a Tampa police officer's home has been identified as 15-year-old Bradley Hulett of Lithia. Hulett is pictured here on the Facebook page of Operation Lotus, a Hillsborough County non-profit that supports families coping with tragedy and is raising money for Hulett's family. [Facebook]
    Bradley Hulett, 15, was described as sweet, intelligent and charismatic.
  2. A transient mother is facing three counts of felony child neglect after an officer found three children alone on a dilapidated bus early Saturday morning. [Gulfport Police Department]
    She has been charged with three counts of felony child neglect.
  3. Off-duty detention Deputy Leighton Ricketts, 32, was arrested Saturday on suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol early Saturday morning. A four-year veteran of the Sheriff’s office, Ricketts was placed on unpaid administrative leave pending the results of an internal affairs investigation. [Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office] [ANASTASIA DAWSON  |  HCSO]
    Detention Deputy Leighton Ricketts, a four-year veteran of the Sheriff’s Office, was placed on unpaid administrative leave pending the results of an internal affairs investigation.
  4. This is a booking photo of Eric Banks, who police say robbed a Dunkin Donuts in Gulfport in September. [Sarasota County Jail]
    The robber used a ball cap, clothing and sunglasses to try to conceal his identity. But he couldn’t cover everything.
  5. Blake Faine is charged with DUI manslaughter. His booking photo on that charge was not available Friday afternoon. This is a booking photo from a 2018 arrest. [Pinellas County Jail]
    A 71-year-old woman, Dorothy Wertz, was killed in the crash on Tuesday night.
  6. House Judiciary Committee Chairman Rep. Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y.,left, speaks with House Judiciary Committee ranking member Rep. Doug Collins, R-Ga., right, during a House Judiciary Committee markup of the articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump, Thursday, Dec. 12, 2019, on Capitol Hill in Washington. [ANDREW HARNIK  |  AP]
    The charges now go to the full House for an expected vote next week.
  7. Traffic backing up on southbound Interstate 275 on the Howard Frankland Bridge Thursday evening after the Florida Highway Patrol said a fatal crash took place hours earlier. [Florida Department of Transportation]
    The collision of two pickups left traffic snarled for hours.
  8. WESH 2 News shared aerial video of a crew cleaning up the grapefruit spill on the Florida Turnpike Wednesday. [Screenshot]
    Loose fruit created a traffic squeeze that was not appealing.
  9. A rendering of what Clearwater's downtown waterfront will look like once Imagine Clearwater's plans come to fruition. The mock-up is oriented so the top is the western waterfront and the bottom is the the eastern waterfront. In the southwest, a lake is planned underneath the Memorial Causeway. A shaded bluff walk will run along the waterfront's eastern edge, and in the middle of the complex, Clearwater plans a 4,000-seat covered concert venue. To the north, what is now Coachman Park will be re-imagined as a new garden. [Stantec via the City of Clearwater]
    Here’s one thing: People are worried about parking.
  10. Rodney Davis, 56, shown in video released from the Polk County Sheriff's Office of Operation Santa's Naughty List. Davis, a Disney World security guard, is accused of soliciting prostitution. [Polk County Sheriff's Office]
    His arrest was one of 124 in Operation Santa’s Naughty List, a prostitution and human trafficking sting from the Polk County Sheriff’s Office.
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement