Duluth cleaning up after destructive storms rip through

Duluth residents are recovering from one of the most destructive storms to hit the area in many years. The early morning storm left tens of thousands without power, and hundreds of trees down — on homes, on power lines, on streets.

Authorities urged residents to avoid driving unless necessary due to the many downed power lines and trees. Minnesota Power estimates a hundred of its power poles were down, and that some residents may not have power restored for three to four days; a utility representative said help was coming from as far as St. Louis, Missouri.

A major water plant was without power for much of the day, leading city leaders to ask residents to conserve water.

“The lights went out, it flickered a couple times, and then that wind, it’s just unbelievable,” Bob Amac, a Duluth resident, told Fox 9. “The trees bent over like they were touching the ground. The rain was just coming down, was going vertical. I thought the whole house was going to blow away.”

“Watching these trees be lit up by the continuous flashes of thunder and lightning. And then I started hearing big cracking sounds,” John Nephew, a Duluth resident, told Fox 9. “There’s the sound of a big trunk cracking.”

Officials said one government wind gauge measured a wind gust of 100 MPH.

“It’s mind-blowing, you can’t believe it. I was around for the 2012 floods and I think this is more shocking. See all these trees that have been here for hundreds of years go down,” Jordan Decaro, a Duluth resident, told Fox 9.