By Kevin Edwards
BC Staff Writer
Bolivar County residents are having power restored and some sense of normality returned after a powerful storm system hit the Delta in the early morning of Jan. 11.
The National Weather Service in Jackson confirmed four tornadoes touched down in Cleveland’s proximity, including near Benoit, Winstonville, Drew and Parchman.
Damage to infrastructure in the area varied in severity but most Bolivar County residents shared the experience of losing power.
Some areas lost power for as little as a few hours while others had to wait several days.
Mound Bayou Mayor Eulah Peterson said power returned to the town on Sunday afternoon after losing it on Saturday morning.
“We had some damage and our water is back on and lights are back on,” Peterson said. “We’re kind of surviving. We had roof damage at our community building where the roof was peeled off and some trees down.
“Out in the rural areas I think we had some damage, some mobile homes had some damage, but in the city limits we had minimal damage. I don’t know if all of the people in the rural areas have gotten their power back on but ours is on and has been on since Sunday.
Access to water was compromised due to the storm, but Peterson said the city was able to use an emergency generator to access the well until the power returned.
“From Saturday morning until Sunday afternoon, we were without power,” Peterson said. “With damage, the county came as we had a tree that had fallen across a street and cut it and got it up out of the street. Some people maybe had some limbs down. Some people said they had some shingles blow off.
“Primarily, we’re OK.”
Mayor Shirley Edwards of Ruleville said her city was getting back to normal as well.
“We’re doing great. We’ve got our lights restored and everybody’s got things to eat. Our water never did go out. We had water at all times. Our water never went out throughout the whole storm.
“We’ve had power since Jan. 13 at 10 o’clock that night.”
Cheryl Comans of Entergy said that all those who could get power should have it returned by last Wednesday evening.
A representative of Delta Electric Power Association said there was no timetable as to when power would be restored to all customers.
The American Red Cross has a feeding station at the U.S. Army National Guard Armory at 4127 Highway 49 in Drew for those still affected by the storm.
Hours are 12:30 p.m. and 6:00 p.m. Monday through Sunday.