CHARLESTON, W.Va. – Crews with Mon Power and Potomac Edison were continuing damage assessments Wednesday in parts of West Virginia — a day after strong thunderstorms took down trees and power lines in areas that stretched from Wood County through central West Virginia and into the Eastern Panhandle counties.

“We still have a quite a bit of work to do and it’s going to be several days until everyone is back in power,” said Todd Meyers, spokesperson for First Energy — the parent company of both Mon Power and Potomac Edison, on Wednesday morning.

At one point following Tuesday’s storms, 90,000 homes and businesses in West Virginia did not power. That number continued to fall throughout the day on Wednesday as crews made restoration progress and additional help arrived from Toledo Edison, Cleveland Electric Illuminating Company and Ohio Edison.

Meyers said Parkersburg took an especially hard hit. “For whatever reason, that area is a magnet for storms. I don’t know exactly why,” Meyers said. “But Parkersburg, sort of the Wood and Wirt County area, at one point, we had more than 15,000 customers out there.”

A teenage girl was injured at Parkersburg’s City Park when a tree limb fell on her during the storm.

Other areas that saw extensive damage, according to Meyers, included parts of Preston, Taylor, Harrison and Doddridge counties. At one point on Tuesday afternoon, the National Weather Service issued a Tornado Warning for Monongalia County. There were no confirmed reports of tornado touchdowns in the Mountain State, though, as of Wednesday morning.

Crews were using helicopters to survey the storm damage in some rural areas. “It’s much easier to get over this rugged terrain with the choppers than to have to drive everything or walk it,” Meyers said on Wednesday’s MetroNews “Talkline.”

The updated outage list for Mon Power and Potomac Edison is available here.

As of Wednesday morning, Appalachian Power was reporting a few thousand outages in West Virginia’s southern counties — largely in Jackson County.

Outside of West Virginia, the Tuesday storms claimed five lives. In upstate New York, four people were killed when several homes collapsed in high winds. In Carroll County, Maryland, a young girl was killed at a summer camp when a tree fell on her. Six other campers were injured at River Valley Ranch Camp.

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Comments

  • Jeremiah

    This is junk. A power company is a business, a goverement sanctioned monopoly but a business, no othere business is guarenteed a specific profit margin. Every time we have a large power outage you hear about the power company in the area going to the PSC and asking to raise rates due to the expense. In many cases this expense and outage could be avoided by the power company actually doing their job and taking care of the lines and the right aways around them. I travel all over the state for work, it is common to see tree limbs growing right up to and some times through power lines. It is the job of the power company to clean this stuff up before there is an outage.

    Easy fix allow AEP Potomac Edison and Mon Power to compete for each others services. People will start keeping track of what company has the most outages and the slowest restoration of power and switch. When they have to compete for customers they will start doing more to provide good service at a reasonable rate.

    • I'm honest at least

      This is going on in Maryland right now. Its not working well at all. This idea paves the way for people to get ripped off when they sign a contract that gives a starting rate then after a year it goes up with market

    • John

      Jeremiah, I agree with you 100% as you gave a very sensible response.

  • Jonus Grumby

    I've been without power since around 5 last evening. One never appreciates something until it's gone. I feel very fortunate to have a generator. Hopefully power will be restored soon to those who need it most.

  • TB

    Can feel a rate increase coming.

  • hosa

    ARE YOU KIDDING ME, THEY WANT A RAISE, EVERYTIME IT ATTEMPTS TO RAIN, THE POWER GOES OUT. IT THEY HAD BEEN DOING THEIR JOB TO BEGIN WITH BY KEEPING THE TRESS CUT, WE WOULDN'T HAVE TO KEEP GOING THROUGH THIS MESS EVERY TIME IT SPRINKLES.

    • Jonus Grumby

      You do realize they have been working on clearing the trees away from the lines for the last couple of years, right? An article in one of the local papers a few days ago revealed outages have diminished 50% in areas where trimming has been implemented. That being said, they never should have scaled back (or abandoned) the program years ago. Now they are playing catch-up, and it is showing.

      • John

        Yes, and guess who is going to be paying for this catch up...the customers!