Crews still cleaning up Sunday after intense storm


Published: Sunday, August 24, 2014 at 6:19 p.m.
Last Modified: Sunday, August 24, 2014 at 6:19 p.m.

Homeowners and utility crews on Sunday were still picking up debris and fixing downed power lines after a heavy thunderstorm passed through the region Saturday night.

More than 160 homes lost electricity when power and cable lines collapsed on Fort Clarke Boulevard, closing the road south of Northwest 23rd Avenue, according to Gainesville Regional Utilities.

A tree fell on top of five power poles, including one cement pole, during the intense thunderstorm. Debris fell into the roadway and dozens of homes lost power at about 6:30 p.m., according to GRU.

Power was restored for all homes in the area at about 4:30 p.m. Sunday. The majority of homes had their power restored by midnight on Saturday, but 47 homes endured through the night and majority of Sunday with no power, said GRU spokesperson Patrick Donges.

Fort Clarke Boulevard south of Northwest 23rd Avenue remained closed Sunday evening. Residents of homes within the closed area can still get to their houses by taking Newberry Road, according to Alachua County sheriff’s spokeswoman Sgt. Becky Butscher.

GRU and Cox Cable employees worked overnight to fix the outage.

Two schools are located near the fallen lines: Fort Clarke Middle School and Hidden Oak Elementary School. Butscher said all parties involved were working hard to get the road open before schools starts on Monday.

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