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Slow-moving thunderstorm knocks out power to hundreds of customers in Washington County

July 19, 2013
  • A huge limb on Hamilton Blvd. after Friday evening's storm.
ylm / Yvette May Staff Photographer

A slow-moving thunderstorm brought heavy rainfall and lightning strikes to Washington County Friday evening, knocking out power to hundreds of customers and canceling events that were part of the Advance Auto Parts Monster Jam at the Hagerstown Speedway.

The Hagerstown Regional Airport received 1.84 inches of rainfall during the storm, which was moving east at 10 mph, according to Bryan Jackson, a National Weather Service meteorologist in Sterling, Va.

“The severe thunderstorm included a prolific amount of lightning, with dozens of strikes per minute,” Jackson said.

Thunderstorms are expected again Saturday afternoon and evening, with a rainfall chance of 70 percent, Jackson said.

Monster Jam events Saturday and Sunday will take place as scheduled, according to a news release sent out by organizers Friday evening.

The weather service had received reports of downed trees on Garland Groh Boulevard in Hagerstown and on Daisy Drive in Maugansville, Jackson said.

There were also reports of arcing power lines and downed trees at several other locations, but “no major incidents were reported,” according to a communications supervisor at Washington County Emergency Services.

About 440 Potomac Edison customers in the county were without power as of 9 p.m. Friday, according to the utility company’s website. 

Todd Meyers, a spokesman for the company, said the storm was not a surprise, and “we have extra staff working tonight and Saturday.”

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— Kaustuv Basu

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