Cleveland County car shop owner barely misses storm debris due to cell phone alert

Bria Bell/ WBTV
Bria Bell/ WBTV

CLEVELAND COUNTY, NC (WBTV) - For the most part, people throughout Cleveland County say they were able to seek shelter safely. One Lawndale man says he almost missed his opportunity to evacuate.

Richard Cook runs Cook's Car Service and says he only left his business because he received an emergency alert on his phone about the storm moments before the roof of the next door Postal Office came flying through his glass windows.

In the four decades that he's been his own boss, he's had one serious issue and that was a break-in years ago. Today he's experiencing his second.

The Postal Office roof shattered the building's exterior glass. Cook says he wouldn't have been in a rush to leave if it wasn't for the alert on his phone urging him to take cover.

"It's amazing what they do this day in age. They can pick up that phone, know right where you're at...send you a message and tell you to leave, ya know?" Cook said.

Cook says he's pretty lucky the damage wasn't worse. He is still without power and expects to be out of business for a couple of days.

Copyright 2017 WBTV. All rights reserved.