MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – Severe thunderstorms overnight across the Twin Cities metro have wreaked havoc once again, toppling trees and knocking out power to tens of thousands of people.
Xcel Energy said as many as 80,000 customers were without power immediately after the storm. There are currently about 20,000 people who don’t have power. Xcel expects to restore power to the vast majority by 11 p.m., but it says a new round of severe weather expected Tuesday evening may change that.
The hardest hit areas appear to be the southern and eastern suburbs. Authorities in South St. Paul said that several downed trees have made a couple areas of the city impassable, and crews are working to clear debris out of the streets.
Many other east metro and south metro suburbs getting significant damage. Those cities include Bloomington, Prior Lake, Farmington, St. Paul, Oakdale, Woodbury, Hastings and Eagan.
A series of 14 power poles in Apple Valley were knocked down due to the storms, closing Pilot Knob Road between 150th Street and 160th Street. Authorities say one pole crushed a car in that area, but nobody was injured as a result. A Target store in the area had about 100 shopping carts blown around because of the storm, and some were destroyed. A viewer submitted a photo of damage at the Airlake Airport in Lakeville, where two planes are shown toppled over each other due to the storms.
There were also reports of trees down in Eagan, Hastings and several areas of St. Paul. A barn near 190th Street and Cedar Avenue in the Apple Valley area lost part of its roof due to the storms. City officials in Hastings said about 1,500 homes there are still without power.
The Cannon River in southern Minnesota, which has already experienced flooding at least once in the last week, got another inch of rain Tuesday morning and river levels are expected to rise during the day. The severe thunderstorm threat is wrapping up around the Twin Cities as people head to work, but it’s going to be a hot and humid day according to WCCO-TV Meteorologist Mike Augustyniak.
More storms are possible Tuesday afternoon and into the evening, creating a chance for more flash flooding around the metro.