MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – Thousands of people are without power in the Twin Cities metro Wednesday morning as gusts up to 60 mph lashed southern Minnesota over the last 24 hours, damaging power lines.
Utility officials say that many of the outages are due to trees and large branches being blown onto powerlines. Crews have been working around the clock to restore service.
The wind in Minnesota right now… pic.twitter.com/JFHXocfYQo
— Kyle Syverson (@Kseevy) March 8, 2017
Since Monday, when severe storms rolled into state, producing hail, strong winds and the earliest-ever recorded tornadoes in state history, Xcel Energy has been working to restore power to communities across much of central and southern Minnesota.
In a statement posted on Facebook, the utility says 60,000 customers throughout Minnesota and western Wisconsin lost power since Monday. Most have seen service restored.
As for the last 24 hours, strong winds have been the story, as much of the state is under a wind advisory until noon Wednesday.
The strongest gust recorded in the last 24 hours was at the Mayo Clinic helipad in southern Minnesota, where 67 mph winds were clocked. In the metro, at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport, gusts of 60 mph were recorded while up in St. Cloud, in central Minnesota, gusts of 56 mph were clocked.
For perspective, the wind threshold for a severe thunderstorm around 58 mph.
— Matt Brickman (@Matt_Brickman) March 8, 2017