Shelby County hit hard by damaging winds from Sunday night storms

Published: Jun. 26, 2023 at 10:16 PM CDT

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - Thousands of MLGW customers are in the dark Monday and will be going on 24 hours without power.

MLGW leaders saying complete power restoration efforts could take days.

Ice storms, wind storms with heavy rain are not new for Shelby County residents; however, the National Weather Service reports damaging winds from Sunday’s storm were between 70 to 90 miles an hour in several of the hardest hit areas.

Those winds causing power polls to split in two, trees to land in streets, major structure damage and thousands without power for more than 24 hours.

“It came on pretty quick, left pretty quick but it was a pretty scary thing,” said Millington resident Lynn Williamson. “We are a small community and of course we will come together and do what we can do to make it pop right back up.”

Winds turning some planes at the Millington Airport upside down, leaving no power to schools in the city and even prompting a precautionary boil water notice Monday.

“With the heat being as high as it’s going to be in the next couple day, It’s a lot to deal with,” said Bartlett resident Anthony Adams.

In Bartlett, Anthony Adams worries about the food in the fridge going bad and his elderly parents.

Many across the county sharing in those fears like the Caldwell family. They’ve been without power and cell service and are preparing to spend another night at a hotel with their little ones.

“Trying to keep them cool, keep them busy especially with no tv or anything like that,” said Bartlett resident Tyron Caldwell. “Food going to waste right now, that’s a big thing. We just went shopping yesterday.”

Back in the greater Memphis area, Cordova, Raleigh and Frayser residents are still without power and watched as city crews clean up debris left behind.

Some also tell Action News 5 they bought brand new generators to make it through the heat.

“We have a lot of storms in Memphis,” said Raliegh resident Julia Walker. “Just recently we’ve been having one every Friday or like every weekend we’ve been having storms. We decided to get a generator after the last ice storm, to be prepared.”

They’re hoping, they won’t have to use them for long.

“I think this going to help us definitely for the next time this happens,” said Raleigh resident Crystal Preziado.

MLGW says at one point, 122,000 customers lost power.

President and CEO Doug McGowen says the damage and outages are the sixth worse in the utility’s history.

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