High winds cause scattered damage in north Ala.

Published 7:49 am Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Scattered damage is being reported from high winds that blew through north Alabama.

Winds gusting to near 50 mph blew through the Tennessee Valley on Wednesday, causing power outages from downed trees and power lines but no injuries.

Utility crews repaired damage that left customers in the dark in parts of Huntsville and 60 miles to the west in Florence, where students went home early because of an outage at Florence High School.

The stiff winds sent a tree crashing into a house in Somerville, and scattered damage was reported as far south as Interstate 20/59.

Muscle Shoals had winds of 37 mph gusting to 49 mph, and Decatur reported gusts to 45 mph.

Chilton County has been placed under a tornado watch until 5 p.m. today.

In addition to Chilton County, other Alabama counties included in the watch are Bibb, Blount, Calhoun, Chambers, Cherokee, Clay, Cleburne, Coosa, Cullman, Dekalb, Etowah, Jackson, Jefferson, Madison, Marshall, Morgan, Randolph, Shelby, St. Clair, Talladega, Tallapoosa, Tuscaloosa, Walker and Winston.

The National Weather Service has issued a lake wind avisory for Chilton County today. Southerly winds from 25 mph to 35 mph are expected, with occasional gusts to 70 mph as a squall line moves through.