Tens of thousands without power Christmas morning after powerful storms

PECO truck in the foreground, PECO worker in the background

PECO truck in the foreground, PECO worker in the background (Emma Lee/WHYY)

This article originally appeared on NBC10.

Tens of thousands of people were without power Christmas morning after a gut-punch of a storm packing strong winds and heavy rain walloped the region.

PECO reported the bulk of Christmas morning power outages with more 56,000 as of 6 a.m. By 11 a.m., the outages were down to around 31,000. The majority of those outages were in Chester, Delaware and Montgomery counties. PPL Electric also had more than 1,000 outages in Bucks and Lehigh counties.

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Power customers in New Jersey and Delaware weren’t spared as Delmarva (under 2,000), AC Electric (nearly 6,000) and PSE&G (less than 1,000) also reported outages in the area as of 11 a.m.

On Thursday, a PSE&G spokesman told us the company understands its customers will be extra eager to get their power back on as many celebrate Christmas with their families.

“We appreciate that this is not a good time of the year to be without power,” Tony Garrihy said. “Our folks will be on duty, ready to address this situation.”

Utility crews are coming in from other states and prepared to work through the holiday and into the weekend if necessary.

If you are without power, be sure to call your utility or report it online. Don’t assume your neighbors have already done so.

Wind gusts topped out at 63 mph at New Castle International Airport in Delaware, late Thursday night. Overnight, gusts of 61 mph were reported at Atlantic City International Airport and in Mount Laurel, New Jersey. The top gust at Philadelphia International Airport was 53 mph as many parts of the region had gusts surpassing 50 mph. A gust of 48 mph was even reported as far north as the Poconos.

Winds kept whipping into the wee hours of Christmas morning, but the worst of the winds were gone before daybreak, the National weather Service said. Christmas decorations might have blown away if not tied down.

Lots fell by the time the last of the storms began moving out mid-morning with more than an inch having fallen in many neighborhoods. Middletown, Delaware, and Eagleville, Montgomery County, had already gotten nearly 3 inches of rain as of 5:10 a.m.

Flood warnings are in effect along areas prone to flooding like creeks in Pennsylvania, northern Delaware and parts of South Jersey. Street flooding also can’t be ruled out so be careful if you head out Christmas morning.

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As the rain moved out later in the morning, colder temperatures rushed in. The temp in Philly dropped 10 degrees in just a couple hours during the morning. Temperatures Friday are expected to fall to the low to mid 30s by late afternoon.

It will still be breezy on Christmas afternoon, and partly sunny conditions return. It will feel like the 20s.

The weekend will continue to see cold weather as sunshine returns and high temperatures only hit the low 30s Saturday before warming into the low 40s Sunday.

Make sure you download the NBC10 app and keep checking the First Alert Weather forecast so you can get any updates.

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