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Heavy thunderstorms prompt flood warnings, watches in area

storms-at-pizza-palooza-07-24-2011

Storm clouds move over the Northwest Ohio Pizza Palooza at Centennial Terrace in Sylvania Township. Brian Easterling of Amie's Pizza, one of the participating businesses, said the event was suspended half an hour at most during last night's storm.

THE BLADE/ANDY MORRISON
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Thunderstorms accompanied by damaging winds Saturday evening drenched parts of northwest Ohio and southeast Michigan

Heavy rain between 7:30 and 8:30 p.m. prompted the National Weather Service to issue a flash-flood warning for northwestern Sandusky and southwestern Ottawa counties. A flash-flood watch was issued for much of the rest of the region.

Trees and power lines were felled by winds during a thunderstorm that passed through Lenawee County before 6 p.m., the weather service reported. Wind speeds of 39 mph were recorded about 7:30 p.m. at the Toledo Light buoy in Maumee Bay during a thunderstorm.

In Hancock County, more than 500 telephone customers of TDS Telecom lost service after a lightning strike about 6:40 p.m. at the firm's office in Arcadia, Ohio, TDS spokesman Cindy Tomlinson said.

Toledo Edison Co. said an estimated 10,000 customers were without power last night as the result of thunderstorms Saturday and Friday. The number included 4,500 in Wood County who lost power last night and 2,000 who were still without electricity after Friday's storms.

Lightning, high winds, and heavy rain contributed to the power losses, utility spokesman Debbie Paul said.

She said that an estimated 2,000 customers in the Toledo area who lost power after the thunderstorms Friday were expected to remain without power into Sunday.

"Servicemen are ... working around the clock to serve anyone who lost power," she said.

Ms. Paul said crews also got help from sister company Ohio Edison.

She said that many of the customers without power are in western Lucas County in what Edison calls its Holland Service Center Area, although outages include customers in Toledo and Maumee.

The weather service forecasts a continued chance of showers and thunderstorms, especially after 10 a.m. Sunday, with a high near 91.

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