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Thousands Remain Without Power After Severe Storms Roll Through New England

A round of very potent thunderstorms ripped across New England Friday afternoon and evening. These storms brought strong winds and large hail to the region. Significant power outages occurred as trees toppled power lines, damaged houses and smashed cars.

A particularly strong cluster of storms ripped through Middlesex and Essex counties in northeast Massachusetts. Andover and Lawrence were hit hard. Up to 80% of Andover lost power Friday afternoon. At least two cars and one house were hit by falling trees in the town. Both Andover and Lawrence saw numerous roads closed due to fallen trees.

Damage to cars and houses were also reported in Douglas, where a couple was injured when a tree smashed the car they were driving, trapping them inside. That tree also brought down power lines that complicated the couple's situation even more.

At least four injuries and one death have been attributed to these powerful storms. A man camping in Vermont was tragically killed by a falling tree during a round of severe weather on Thursday. The four injuries occurred due to trees falling on cars and homes in Massachusetts.

Damage to homes and power lines in Essex County. Photos: NECN

These storms have caused the most significant power outage situation across New England since the Mid-March nor'easter. At its peak Friday evening, over 110,000 customers across the region were without power with 60,000 out in Massachusetts alone. As of 10am Saturday, about 42,000 remain without power with just over 37,000 out in Massachusetts alone, most in Essex county.

The storm that tore through Essex county, Massachusetts brought hear-hurricane force gusts. A 67mph gust was reported in Haverhill (hurricane force winds start at 74mph). These winds entered into Rockingham county in southeast New Hampshire and caused large tree damage in Fremont and Newmarket, New Hampshire. This cluster then moved into York county, Maine, causing tens of thousands of outages there. These gusts, along with torrential rain, led to blinding visibility.

Hail up to the size of a quarter was reported in West Brookfield, Massachusetts. One inch was also reported in Sterling, MA and Storrs, CT; Brattleboro, VT and Chesterfield, NH. Hail up to 1.5 inches was reported in Westmoreland, NH, on the border with Vermont.

The storms also brought very frequent cloud to ground lightning and nearly constant rolling thunder. An apartment complex was struck by lightning in Meriden, Connecticut, causing a fire and displacing 100 people.

Flash flooding was also reported in Hampshire county, Massachusetts with streets closed and vehicles stranded in North Amherst.

More storms are expected this weekend, but storms as powerful as the ones on Thursday and Friday are not expected.



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