High winds rip through Lowndes County

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By: Emma Wheeler | WCTV Eyewitness News
April 19, 2019

LOWNDES COUNTY, Ga. (WCTV) -- Lowndes County residents beared down Friday as high winds blew through the region.

On Friday morning, Lowndes County residents were notified through the CodeRED alert system of severe thunderstorms rolling through the area. Lowndes County officials said about 2,000 residents lost power.

While some trees were knocked down, no major damages were reported in the county.

School officials with both Valdosta City Schools and Lowndes County Schools cancelled classes Friday.

Valdosta State University delayed classes and activities Friday morning before 10:00 a.m. Campus life picked back up and went back to normal Friday afternoon.

Valdosta State is certified by the National Weather Service as a Storm Ready Campus. It's an accreditation fewer than six percent of four-year degree universities are given across the nation.

It acknowledges schools that have the communication and tools in place to keep students safe in an emergency.

Many students on campus said they feel ready for weather, but some said even more could be done to keep them safe.

"To have the drills that we had throughout K-12 to be honest," said student Caterah Watts when asked what she would like to see staff do in weather preparedness.

Student Brodii Prowell agreed, saying he doesn't feel the campus does enough.

"But I don't really expect anything to happen out here anyways," Prowell said.

The university encourages students to monitor the campus alert system. It sends a text and email to students during emergencies.

University officials also post updates online and on social media. Safety tips can also be found on the university website for all kinds of emergencies, from severe weather to public safety.

School officials said they VSU Public Safety works with Lowndes County Emergency Management during delays and closures.