Storm Downs Trees, Damaging Cars and Utility Lines

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Branches were down all over the Hill after the July 1st storm, some —like this one— taking down utility lines. Twitter: @HillRagDC

Two storms raged through the region Thursday night, the second tagged with a tornado warning that lasted through 9:30 p.m.

Heavy rains and powerful winds ravaged the area. Trees were downed throughout the neighborhood, with Northeast areas like Stanton Park, NoMA, H Street and Trinidad particularly hardest hit, although trees and branches have been reported down throughout the District.

An early storm knocked down trees and acted as a harbinger for the heavier storm that hit the Hill just before 9 p.m. The storm appears not to have been anticipated until after the work day was concluded. Severe thunderstorm warnings were issued by the National Weather Service (NWS) about 8:30 p.m, with a tornado warning issued just before 9 p.m.

With short notice, many were less prepared for the storm. Debris was spotted falling from construction sites. Hill Rag obtained this video from the Capitol Riverfront area. The camera person said that boards from a construction site at First and L Streets SE flew by their 12th story window, adding they “could have killed a person.”

No injuries were reported in the area, although readers reported debris damaged vehicles parked in the street.

The storm tracked right through the center of the District.

By 10:30 p.m., Pepco reported that at least 49,000 people in the region were without power, about 4,000 of them in the District. As of Friday morning, Pepco crews were working to restore power.

To report a downed wire, call Pepco at 1-877-737-2662. Remember, any downed wire could be in contact with electricity whether it is an electric wire or not, so do not touch them until you are absolutely certain; the same goes for cars in contact with wires.

If you have a downed telephone line in your area, please report it to Verizon Repair at 1-800-VERIZON (1-800-837-4966). For your own safety do not touch or move the downed line.

Fallen trees can be reported to the District Department of Transportation (DDOT) by calling 311 or by visiting 311.dc.gov/citizen. While the Urban Forestry Team is out Friday in full force, Councilmember Charles Allen Ward 6-D) tweeted to counsel patience Friday morning. “With rain still falling, most cleanup can’t start until the morning and there is a lot to do,” he said.