Powerful Storm Causes Blackout, 2,000 Customers Without Power in State College
Update: 3:56 p.m. -- Most State College residents had their power restored around noon according to West Penn Power.
Area manager Thomas Kearney also told StateCollege.com that 42 Boalsburg customers lost their power shortly after 1 p.m. Thursday. Crews are working to get the problem fixed before the end of today's workday.
Severe thunderstorms left approximately 2,000 State College residents and businesses without electricity Thursday morning.
Areas hit the hardest by the overnight storms include Ferguson Township and Patton Township near the intersection of North Atherton Street and Aaron Drive.
Tom Kearney, an area manager for West Penn Power says that crews are out working on highly populated areas. The goal is to restore power within the next few hours, “hopefully by lunchtime,” according to Kearney.
Heavy winds and some trees hitting power lines are blamed for the outages.
Kearney says 70 customers lost power in College Heights, along with 60 in Park Forest.
A number of area businesses were forced to close their doors because of the blackout. An employee at the North Atherton McDonald's stood in the driveway waving customers away. She explained the restaurant couldn't open without electricity.
A line of strong thunderstorms pummeled the region early Thursday morning, triggering a flood watch that remains in effect until 8 p.m. Thursday.
There appears to be light at the end of the stormy tunnel for State College residents.
Tom Kines, a senior meteorologist at AccuWeather, says there might be a thunderstorm between noon and 5 p.m. That could bring us some heavy rain but no severe weather is expected.
Friday and Saturday are both expected to be much more comfortable days with lower humidity. A stray thunderstorm or two could occur Friday, but the sun should peek out at times throughout the day.
Saturday is supposed to be sunny and nice with a high of 78 degrees.
Be sure to check back for the latest AccuWeather forecast update on the StateCollege.com homepage by clicking here.