ALLEN COUNTY, Ind. (WANE) – Residents all across Fort Wayne remained without power Wednesday afternoon after strong storms rolled through the area Tuesday evening.
Some 19,400 customers lost power after 5-9 inches of rain was dumped on the area coupled with 70 mph winds that uprooted trees and broke limbs. Indiana Michigan Power said 15 poles were either damaged or broken, and power lines were brought down.
The National Weather Service reports that Tuesday’s rainfall tied a record for the most rain ever in a day at Fort Wayne International Airport where 2.83 inches fell. However some areas saw significantly more rain.
As of 9 p.m. Wednesday, crews had restored power to more than 90% of the customers in the dark. Fewer than 1,700 customers were still without power in the Fort Wayne.
Due to the extent of damage, though, I&M may not be able to restore power to everyone until late Thursday.
This video is from Brandriff Street, in the area of Taylor Street and South Calhoun Street:
I&M said restoration may be affected by more rain and storms in the forecast; traffic issues, including debris in the roadways and extensive repair work; flooding and standing water; and the heat.
I&M said they understand a power outage is inconvenient for their customers and communities, and they appreciate patience as crews work safely to restore power.
I&M is reminding everyone of several safety precautions:
- Downed power lines. Stay away from any downed wires and report them to I&M. You can contact I&M by calling 1-800-311-4634, report on the app or website, or call 911.
- Be careful around debris and fences. Fallen limbs and other debris can hide downed power lines, and a downed line may be contacting a fence out of line of sight. Look around carefully.
- Trees could fall or drop limbs at any moment, please look up.
- Driving conditions. Many roads may be blocked or strewn with debris and some areas are flooded. Take it slow, watch for hazards, and keep an eye out for first responders and utility crews working in or near roads.
- Traffic lights may not be functioning. Please use caution and be mindful of first responders and utility workers on the roadways.
- The heat index is very high. Safety is the top priority for I&M employees and customers with an increased focused on hydration due to the heat.
- I&M urges the general public not to approach the crews. For everyone’s safety, please do not approach I&M employees and contractors working to restore power.
See the location and status of outages using the I&M outage map.