RICHLAND COUNTY — Almost 60,000 customers were without power Tuesday morning across north central Ohio after powerful storms packing high winds roared through the area Monday night.
According to FirstEnergy and AEP websites on Tuesday morning, there were 59,457 customers currently without power in Richland, Ashland, Crawford and Knox counties.
According to First Energy, there were 19,168 in Richland, 10,498 in Ashland, 2,885 in Crawford and 405 in Knox.
AEP reported 14,767 in Knox, 6,713 in Richland, 1,676 in Crawford and 241 in Ashland.
The storms that slammed the area Monday night knocked down trees around the area, downing power lines over a widespread area.
Richland County Emergency Management Agency Director Joe Petrycki said Tuesday morning there are reports of “multiple, multiple downed trees, downed power lines, utility poles and blocked roads.”
“I can’t even give you a general location. It’s all over the county,” he said.
“We are in the process of activating the Emergency Operations Center and trying to get damage assessment teams spun up to head out to areas we know have damage,” Petrycki said.
He said it appears damage was caused by straight-line winds, which may have eclipsed 65 miles per hour overnight.
“Until we get a professional (meteorologist) to look at it, we won’t know for sure (on any tornado activity),” he said.
Richland County government buildings are without power and are closed today, according to Commissioner Tony Vero.
A Washington Township firefighter told Richland Source on Tuesday morning she had not seen so many downed trees since the ice storm in 2005, a winter event that knocked out power for a week for many area residents.
This is a developing story and will be updated.
If you would like to share storm-related photos from your area, including downed trees or limbs, email them to email@example.com. Please include address where photos were taken. We will put photos into a gallery for area residents to see. Thanks!