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High winds cause power outages, heavy damage throughout area

High winds across Northwest Ohio and Southeast Michigan have led to numerous power outages.
(Source: Viewer Photo)
(Source: Toledo Fire and Rescue)
(Source: Viewer Photo)

TOLEDO, OH (WTOL) - High winds across Northwest Ohio and Southeast Michigan have led to numerous power outages and reports of damage (get links for the latest data below).

A handful of schools are closed due to power loss. Check full list here

At 11:30 p.m. Thursday, Toledo Edison reported about 1,800 customers in Lucas County were still dealing with an outage.

Check for outages in the Toledo area here.

Scattered outages are also being reported by Consumers Energy. At 6:30 p.m. Thursday, over 12,000 customers in Monroe, Lenawee and Hillsdale County reportedly had no power.

Blissfield police say 96 percent of the village was without power at one point. The main line was down, affecting the entire southern end of the county. It's unknown when there will be full restoration.

DTE Energy reported 400,000 customers without electricity in southeast lower Michigan - that includes the city of Monroe and northern Monroe County. The power outage not only affected homes and businesses, but stop lights also went dark due to the blackout.

Several shelters have been set up for people without power:

  • Herrick Hospital in Tecumseh
  • ProMedica Herrick Hospital in Tecumseh
  • Bixby Hospital in Adrian
  • Blissfield Fire Department
  • Jerusalem Township Hall

If your power is out, the Red Cross advises to keep your refrigerator and freezer doors closed as much as possible, visit warming centers to stay warm and charged your electronics and let your water run to prevent your pipes from freezing.

Damage was an issue for public and electric crews throughout the day.

"We were very lucky that it just missed our neighbors car and fell that way right into the street," said homeowner John Grady.

One half of a nearly 60-year-old linden tree in Grady's yard came down because of the high winds.

The family called Tree Monkey to remove the rest of it to avoid serious damage in the future.

"Some of this stuff is very, very dangerous as you can imagine," said Joey Buczko, owner of Tree Monkey. "You've got a big 5,000 pound log up in the tree and it's dangling, it could be a matter of seconds before the right gust of wind comes and knocks it out and crushes the house or you, your truck or whatever so it's a very dangerous business."

Tree Monkey expects work to continue for weeks.

"Time is of an essence here because the next guy is waiting for us," said Buczko. "As soon as we get here we have to start the chipper, start chipping so we can move on and get to the next place."

The City of Toledo took more than 250 "high emergency" tree service requests during the storm.

"People would be understanding that of course our first priority is to remove any trees or major limbs that are in roadways so that traffic can proceed, and then we move along into the next higher rated priorities," said city spokesperson Janet Schroeder.

As of early afternoon, Forestry division workers completed about 80 of them.

The city is getting calls asking who's responsible for trees falling in their yards.

If it's in the right of way - from the sidewalk to the street - it's most likely the city's.

Southeast Michigan also had significant damage from the storm.

The city reported 39 trees came down or had major limbs down during the storm. At least 10 of the trees had blocked a street and had to be removed right away.

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