By Jim Melwert and Syma Chowdhry
LIMA, Pa. (CBS) — Delaware County, Pa. has declared a state of emergency after getting clobbered by yesterday’s storm, with a call to the governor’s office late this morning.
With tens of thousands of power outages, dozens of major road closures, and other storm-related headaches, Delaware County Council chairman Mario Civera says they reached out to Governor Wolf for assistance.
“This declaration, and the reason for it is that if there is money to be available, state aid to make available for the municipalities that were struck, we wanted to be in place, that that declaration would take place, and that’s the reason why the call to the governor’s office.”
And while crews work to clear fallen trees and branches, folks in Delaware County try to pick up the pieces and deal with the aftermath of Tuesday night’s storm.
James Donaghy, of Chester Heights, says, “Lightning, thunder and all of a sudden the power went out.”
Trees and branches came crashing down on Donaghy’s house and car.
“The dog started to act up so she must have known it was coming.”
The 86-year-old has been recovering from a recent stroke and was stuck at home until a family member came to get him.
Only a breeze from the patio door could cool him and his dog, “Natty,” after being without power for more than 20 hours.
“Yeah, the fridge is packed with food. I don’t know what’s going to happen with that. Terrible.”
Next door, the Breeden family lost power after a tree fell on their house.
John Breeden says, “They always say it sounds like a train, it sounded like a train, a locomotive and it was there like that and things were flying.”
They spent the morning trying to clean up their yard and see what they can salvage from the patio.
But the most important item on their to do list: find a generator.
“Lowe’s is out, Home Depot is out, our son had to go to the Glasgow, Delaware Home Depot just to get a generator. They only had one and he got the last one.”
Up to 70,000 people had been without power.
PECO says it hopes to have 95 percent of its outages repaired by Friday, but county councilman John McBlain points out that PECO thinks “several thousand” of its customers in Delaware County could still be in the dark this weekend.