UPDATE: Trees downed, power out after tornado sighted in Carrollton

Published 5:31 pm Friday, June 16, 2023

Editor’s note: This story was updated at 7:07 p.m. with information on power outages.

More than 1,000 Isle of Wight County residents are without power after a tornado of unknown intensity was sighted in Carrollton during a June 16 thunderstorm blew through Isle of Wight County.

The National Weather Service issued a tornado warning for Smithfield from 4:38 p.m. through 5 p.m., stating that a severe thunderstorm capable of producing a tornado was located over the town moving east at 25 mph.

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According to NWS Meteorologist Allison Mitchell, an actual tornado was spotted in the Carrollton area. Kyle and Marion Crock of Carrollton captured images of the tornado’s formation from their backyard at 4:48 p.m.

As of shortly after 5 p.m. the storm’s epicenter had moved between the James River Bridge and Monitor-Merrimac Bridge-Tunnel.

The NWS has received no reports of tornado damage as of yet, and has yet to survey the Carrollton area to determine the tornado’s classification on the enhanced Fujita scale.

Smithfield’s Volunteer Fire Department responded to a blown transformer on Magruder Road in town that knocked out power but didn’t spark a fire.

Will Drewry, Isle of Wight County’s emergency services coordinator, said there were no reports of any major damage aside from downed trees and power lines.

About 25 minutes after the tornado warning ended, William and Julian Leaman heard a crack and lost power. A large limb had broken off a tree in their father, Eric’s, yard and struck a power pole on the opposite side of Mason Street, cutting electricity to the entire block and obstructing vehicular travel in both directions.

The brothers called the fire department but were told to keep people away from the site until Dominion Energy personnel arrive, which could take up to 12 hours based on their communication with the company.

According to Dominion’s online outage map, between 1,000 and 2,500 Isle of Wight County residents were without power as of 6:54 p.m.

The 7 p.m. Friday concert scheduled at the Main Street Square Stage by The Smithfield Times is canceled.