Severe thunderstorms and two tornadoes roared through the Midlands, tossing trees into roadways and causing flash floods.
The National Weather Service confirmed that a tornado touched down shortly after 1 p.m. near the Lexington-Aiken county line, near the intersection of Sand Dam and Cline Taylor roads, just north of Wagener. The tornado then moved east-northeast into Lexington County to near the intersection of Greens Bridge and Charles Town roads. A second tornado was confirmed in Sumter County near Pinewood.
The Wagener tornado knocked down many trees in that rural area and damaged the roof and one wall of a house, according to the Lexington County Fire Service. No one was injured.
Storm damage was reported in a line from Aiken through Cheraw.
The S.C. Highway Patrol reported 20 tree-on-road incidents in Aiken, eight in Richland and four in Lexington from 11 a.m.-2 p.m.
SCE&G reported 4,303 power outages, with 3,257 of those in Aiken County, around 3:30 p.m. Friday.
Several roads had to be closed during flash flooding, including the intersection of Two Notch and Spears Creek roads in Northeast Richland. Hail was reported in Aiken and in Northeast Richland.
Several people called Sumter County emergency officials and reported seeing “something along the lines of a tornado,” said Robbie Baker, county director of emergency management. Only minimal damage in the county was reported.
Rainfall was spotty statewide, with much of the Upstate getting little. In the Midlands, gauges in the Columbia area measured around an inch, but an unofficial gauge in Batesburg-Leesville registered 2.13 inches.
The severe weather was spawned as a cold front met warm, moist air over the state, according to Mark Malsick, severe weather liaison for the State Climate Office.
Cooler daytime temperatures are expected this weekend, with highs in the mid to upper 50s both days.