Power Restoration Efforts Continue, Storm Cleanup Underway

KCRG/Gazette Staff Reports

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By Aaron Hepker

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa - Cleanup continues today following several rounds of severe weather that tore through Eastern Iowa Sunday.

Late Sunday night, nearly 48,000 Alliant Energy customers lost power due to the severe storms.

A power outage forced Prairie High School to cancel classes on Monday. According to district officials, a power transformer went offline during the storms Sunday night, leading to the outage. The power outage also affected the district's computer servers.

Classes at other schools in the district were held as usual Monday, as electrical service for those schools were restored. However, the high school remained without power Monday.

A generator was in place late Monday morning, which should allow classes to resume Tuesday. However, district officials believe they will utilize generator power for several days.

The branch manager of Gypsum Supply Company, 55 43rd Ave. SW, said he got a phone call shortly after midnight Monday telling him portions of his southwest side business were blown over by the wind.

Bill Larson said the straight-line winds, estimated at 70 to 80 mph, destroyed three large warehouse buildings and damaged another. The warehouses contained insulation, ceiling tiles and other similar building materials, as well as several delivery trucks.

A portion of the material inside the warehouses will be recovered. No one was hurt, and the company is still making deliveries today.

Also, Permeate Refining, a waste-to-energy plant that burns waste for Alliant Energy, sustained significant damage to their building in southwest Cedar Rapids. Company officials said the damage could approach $500,000.

And at the Prairie Oaks mobile home park, 4420 Bowling St. SW, about a dozen mobile homes damaged by trees or falling limbs. One may be a total loss.

Officials said 50 to 60 trees in the park were damaged or toppled. No one was hurt, but some were awakened as trees fell on their homes.

In one case, a tree went through side of a man's mobile home and hit him as he was in his bed.
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