After supercell storm, some southern Indiana customers still without power (2024)

UPDATE:

After a storm Tuesday in Bloomington, Duke Energyexpects to havepower restoredto "most customers" before Friday, but "many will be restored sooner," a spokeswoman said.

Angeline Protogere warned, however, that some homessustained so much damagethat owners or occupants may need to bring in an electrician before they can receive service.

Read the latest from the Bloomington Herald-Times below:

Bloomington residents recount powerful storm

Some Monroe County residents still without power.

EARLIER:

It might be a good idea to check on your friends or family who live in Bloomington and if you're planning to head to Monroe County, you might check your route in advance.

A weather “supercell”uprooted trees and utility poles,cutting electricityto about 43,000 customers in Bloomington late Tuesday afternoon, The Herald-Times reported.

Here's what we know.

Local officials warn residents to stay off the roads

ADuke Energyspokeswoman urged people to remain cautious, especially during their commutes, as many roads have fallen trees, debris and power lines blocking them. Many traffic signals are not working.

“It’s really bad,” said Liz Irwin, a Bloomington-based government and community relations manager for the energy company.

“Try to stay home if you don’t have to go out, and just be patient,” said Justin Baker, deputy director ofMonroe County Emergency Management, as crews work to restore power and remove downed trees in multiple areas.

Baker said he did not yet have a list of which roads were closed to vehicle traffic but he would update the department’s website (tinyurl.com/mv6vhpk4) and share the information via social media as soon as it is available.

Bloomington storm updates

The storm struck during rush hour Tuesday and resulted in fallen debris making some roads impassable, which caused delays that affected many commutes.

There had been reports of strong winds — Irwin said up to 60 mph —felled trees and gas leaks. No serious storm-related injuries were reported as of Wednesday morning, according to IU Health Bloomington Hospital.

Baker said American Red Cross workers are working with health-compromised individuals to make sure they have access to power and other necessities related to their care.

Volunteers are going around Wednesday assessing damage and advising residents on how to go about seeking help, Baker said. “Right now, I can’t give a complete picture of the damage because we are in the processing of assessing that.”

How to report storm damage

Thecounty commissionersdeclared a disaster status at 8 p.m. Tuesday. Residents with damage to their homes or property are encouraged to call211to report the situation and seek help.

“Understand that power outages may be extended because of the number of power lines and trees down. And if your house was damaged in any way, call 211 to report that," Baker said.

When will power be restored in Bloomington?

Irwin said Duke’s crews were still assessing damages and she could not yet estimate when power would be restored.

The utility was bringing in additional crews to determine to which areas they can restore power most quickly, she said.

Baker said people without power can spend time outside in the shade or go to public places, such as the library or YMCA, for a respite. “With the storm, the temperatures have cooled down some and it’s going to be a little bit cooler the next couple of days.”

Stay safe if you have to leave your home

Baker said if people have to leave their homes they should stay away from power lines and trees. Irwin agreed, warning people that power lines may be live even though they are on the ground.

“Please exercise caution when navigating through town and take care to avoid downed trees and power lines,” a BPD news release advises. “We expect more inclement weather later today, so if you can, we encourage folks to stay home. Please stay safe.”

Duke Energy safety tips if you encounter downed power lines:

  • Stay away from power lines that have fallen or are sagging.
  • Consider all power lines – as well as trees, limbs and anything else in contact with power lines – energized and dangerous.
  • Report all power line hazards to Duke Energy at 800-228-8485, or contact your local emergency services department or agency.
  • Keep children and family pets away from areas where lines may have fallen (backyards, fields, schoolyards, etc.).
  • If a power line falls across a car that you're in, stay in the car. If you MUST get out of the car due to a fire or other immediate life-threatening situation, do your best to jump clear of the car and land on both feet. Be sure that no part of your body is touching the car when your feet touch the ground.
  • Watch a safety video here:tinyurl.com/kxp6h7jr

Check here for updates:'Supercell' knocks out power to tens of thousands in southern Indiana

Boris Ladwig can be reached at bladwig@heraldt.com.

Katie Wiseman is a trending news intern at IndyStar. Contact her at klwiseman@gannett.com. Follow her on Twitter @itskatiewiseman.

After supercell storm, some southern Indiana customers still without power (2024)

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