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Severe thunderstorms rolled through Evanston Monday afternoon, bringing down trees and large branches across the city and causing power outages for thousands of residents.

The Evanston Police Department wrote on Twitter at 2:02 p.m. that no injuries were reported, and advised that the storm damage could cause traffic disruptions, “especially in the Central Street area where the damage & outages are most significant.”

Credit: Wendi Kromash

Although the storm only lasted a couple of hours, large branches and even whole trees were brought down by strong winds. Some brought down power lines, knocking out power for Evanston residents.

Evanston Fire Division Chief Kim Kull told the RoundTable that at the peak of the disruption, there were 1,674 power outages in Evanston. But there were only a small number of fire calls for branches or residences that were resolved quickly. She said Public Works crews were out and working to clear remaining debris from city streets.

ComEd spokesperson Tom Dominguez told the RoundTable that around 1,100 of Evanston’s 36,000 customers were still experiencing outages as of 4:30 p.m., and that crews were already in the city working to restore the rest. He said prior preparation allowed crews to respond to damage and outages quickly after the storm had passed.

Credit: Wendi Kromash

He said crews should resolve the remaining outages caused by downed trees and power lines by the end of the day, if not earlier.

CTA Purple Line trains were also briefly affected, with the agency’s Twitter posting at 12:51 p.m. trains were “standing at Central due to debris on the tracks. Crews working to restore service.” Five minutes later, the account shared that the debris had been cleared, and that service was resuming with “residual delays.”

The National Weather Service issued a Hazardous Weather Outlook for the Chicagoland area at 3:42 p.m., which warned of “an increasing potential for additional thunderstorm development later this afternoon and evening ahead of a cold front, mainly south of Interstate 80.”

Alex Harrison

Alex Harrison joins the RoundTable for the summer in between his undergraduate and graduate studies at Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism.

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