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High winds cause outages

February 25, 2012
By WARREN SCOTT - Staff writer ( , The Herald-Star

High winds left many area residents without power and brought down utility lines and trees in many areas of the Ohio Valley Friday.

American Electrical Power reported 642 Jefferson County customers were without power late Friday, and First Energy reported outages affecting 338 customers in Brooke County and 123 in Hancock County.

Power to the West Virginia customers was expected to be restored by midnight Friday, according to First Energy's website.

Bob Fowler, Brooke County director of emergency management, said he was aware of lines down on Yankee Street in Wellsburg and Jones Lane in the 49 Hill area near Beech Bottom.

Wellsburg firefighters were called to Eagle Manufacturing at 24th and Charles streets after a 30-foot section of the facility's roof was blown off. The firefighters provided a bucket truck used by Eagle crews to patch the roof.

Weirton firefighters reported a line was down in the Terrace Heights area near Weir High School.

Dispatchers with the Brooke and Hancock county emergency 911 centers said there were reports of lines or trees down in scattered areas of the county.

The Jefferson County Sheriff's Department had received reports of lines down near county Road 16 and Rayland and county Road 47 and Toronto.

The National Weather Service had issued a wind advisory, meaning winds were expected to exceed 45 miles per hour, into early Friday evening.

Brad Rehak, a meteorologist with the weather service, said the high winds could be attributed to the winter storm system running through the Great Lakes region.

But unlike that area, this region isn't expected to see much snow, he said, with anticipated accumulation not expected to exceed a coating to a half-inch by early today and another coating to a half-inch later today.

The weekend is expected to bring a return to winter weather, albeit a brief one.

Rehak said a high temperature of 34 degrees and a low of 21 is expected for today. Sunday is expected to be dry, with a high of 41 degrees and a low of 32 degrees, he said.

Monday is expected to bring a return to warmer weather, with a high of 50 degrees and no further precipitation expected until Tuesday night, and that should be in the form of rain, Rehak said.

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