BLOOMINGTON, Minn. (WCCO) – Thousands of people are still waiting for their power to come back on after severe storms tore a path from St. Cloud to the Twin Cities Tuesday night.
Strong winds, driving rain and golf-ball-sized hail combined to cause plenty of problems for Minnesotans.
Xcel Energy says more than 70,000 people had their electricity knocked out.
Damage In Bloomington
For about 10 blocks along 90th Street, trees and debris litter the curbs following a busy day of cleanup.
The buzzing of chainsaws and pounding of wedges set the tone for busy day of work.
But trees and branches still litter streets and yards.
“It’s amazing,” said Colin Ripple, a storm crew worker. “Looks like it got hit by straight line winds and it came out of nowhere.”
Related: Severe Weather Photo Gallery
Ripple and his work crew spent the day cleaning up a city ball field, where three large ash trees were ripped from the ground.
“It’s hard work, but we’re out here enjoying the nice day and trying to help out a little bit,” Ripple said.
A block west, the storm laid waste to a 2007 Chevy Impala, which was crushed by the weight of a maple limb.
It didn’t take long for the storm to have Kay Sullivan rushing to the basement.
“Took a bit before it got momentum, but, boy, when it started… it was just a wall of water, just a wall of water,” she said.
Heavy rains, winds and large hail packed a punch across a swath of the south metro. And for thousands of Excel Energy customers, it caused wide spread power outages.
Xcel said at the peak of the outage some 75,000 customers were left in the dark by the storms. But crews have restored service to all but 5,400 of them.
The hope is to have complete restoration by 11 p.m. Wednesday.