Storm Rips Through Oak Lawn - Updated 3X

Power gradually being restored. Between 500-3,000 homes still remain in the dark.

1:01 a.m. Sunday, June 5, 2011 -- There is a spaghetti bowl of power lines hanging off the utility pole at 54th Avenue and 96th Street. A ComEd crew is now working on removing the uprooted tree that fell on the lines. A cop told me that it will probably be two or three hours longer before power is restored to residents living in this area.

We received this safety e-alert from Trustee Tom Phelan (Dist. 6):

Also, as of 10:30 pm the following are problems the Village is aware of and working to correct:

·         Power lines down at 95th & 54th Ave and Edison & 54th Ave

·         103rd & Lawler signal flashing red

·         Southwest HWY and Cicero traffic signals not working

·         95th and 52nd traffic signals out

·         95th and Cook traffic signals out

·         Power outage 51st Ave to Massasoit (north of tracks)

·         95th & Central signal out

·         Southwest HWY & 52nd Ave signal out

·         93rd & Major closed due to downed trees

11:47 p.m. Saturday, June 4, 2011 -- ComEd has restored power to approximately 7,000 homes in Oak Lawn, according to the updated outage map. Between 500 and 3001 home are still without power. Last time I checked, they were still sawing the tree that was down in the middle of 54th Avenue at 96th Street.

10:34 p.m. Saturday, June 4, 2011 -- Oak Lawn Public Works and ComEd workers continue to work through the night cutting trees that felled power lines during a a brief, intense storm that rolled through the village around 4 p.m. Saturday.

Much of the damage seems to be in the central area of the village. The sound of buzz saws filled the air as public works officials cut an uprooted 30-foot-tall tree that crashed into the middle of 54th Avenue, taking power lines with it.

Oak Lawn Village Manager Larry Deetjen was on the scene at 54th Avenue and 96th Street assessing the damage.

7:11 p.m. Saturday, June 4, 2011 --

Strong winds, rain and hail ripped through Oak Lawn around 4 p.m. Saturday, damaging trees and some homes.

The National Weather Service reported  71 mph winds and lots of tree damage in the Oak Lawn area. There was also brief pea-sized hail.

The worst damage in Oak Lawn seems to have occurred near the center of town along 96th Street between 52nd Street and 54th Street.

Twenty- to 30-foot tall trees were ripped from the ground from their roots as if weeds. A tree limb crashed through the roof of a home that had just been remodeled.

Less than a block away, 54th Street between 95th and 96th Streets was closed because of an older tree that was blown down and blocking the street.

The brunt of the damage isfrom 99th Street to 91st Street, and from Austin to Cicero Avenue.

Parts of Southwest Highway are also closed near the center of town. Traffic signals are also out on 95th Street between Austin and Cicero.

ComEd is also reporting more than 10,000 residents without power as of 4:30 p.m. Saturday.

Village police said that ComEd expects power to be restored before the end of Saturday evening.

Residents poured out on to the streets near Lake Shore Park surveying damage. Many said they took refuge in their basements or bathrooms when the storm rolled through.

No injuries have been reported.

Tonia Lorenz contributed to this report.

QC June 05, 2011 at 01:28 PM
Great job Lorraine!! What a wallop from that storm. Thanx for being there.
Stan Bruckner June 05, 2011 at 03:39 PM
The patch does a great job! Not one word on the Sun Times news group (including the Southtown and Star)! You guys have awesome coverage! And kudos to police and fire, they were on top of everything that I could see from 96th and 52nd...
Pat F June 05, 2011 at 04:33 PM
Great information..We also had no electric or cable until about 3 in the morning..Thanks for the info..job well done!! You're the only way we could get any info!!
Lorraine Swanson June 05, 2011 at 08:35 PM
Ted, If your power is still out the village is asking that you call 1-800-EDISON-1 (1-800-334-7661 for the i-Phone and Blackberry impaired). There are four crews working the streets as of Sunday afternoon. I will have some other information up shortly.
Lorraine Swanson June 09, 2011 at 04:26 AM
Holy smokes, Donald. Looks like Burbank had a freak microburst also on Saturday. Thanks a lot for adding your picture.


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