CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - Wind gusts from Tropical Storm Michael caused trees to fall and power outages throughout the Lowcountry on Thursday.
At least one tree fell on Ashley River Road in Dorchester County Thursday morning before it was cleared by South Carolina Department of Transportation crews.
North Charleston police said a tree fell and blocked three lanes on Ingleside Drive near I-26 at Hwy 78 and a tree fell on top of a car on Old Ridge Road.
A tree also fell on I-526 at the Daniel Island exit.
In one of the more significant signs of damage, a tree fell on a water valve near St. Johns High School.
A school official said its one of the main sources of water for the school.
Power lines were also down in a number of areas including Twin Lakes Drive in Dorchester County.
Paul Fischer with SCE&G Public Affiars said the biggest threat to power lines are trees and branches.
“Tree trimming, I think is really the number one key to fighting the types of outages these types of storms can bring both in severity and duration,” Fischer said.
On Thursday morning, 23,000 electric customers were without power across the Lowcountry.
Officials with SCE&G said Thursday afternoon that they had been working around the clock prior to the storm’s arrival to ensure customers could get power restored quickly.
“We have been preparing for this storm days before its impact into the weeks before,” Fischer said. “We’ve brought in additional crews from states as far away as Kentucky, Pennsylvania, and Ohio, over 280 additional line crews.”
Fischer said SCE&G crews would continue working until all customer’s power was restored.
Some traffic lights were also reported out in Mount Pleasant and West Ashley.
The National Weather Service measured strong wind gusts Thursday morning with winds reaching 51 mph at Fort Sumter, 49 mph at Folly Beach, and 47 mph at Sullivan’s Island.