We Energies restores power to 60K+ in wake of severe storms: '1 of the most powerful in 20 years'

MILWAUKEE -- We Energies crews restored power to more than 60,000 customers since Friday evening, July 19 following destructive thunderstorms that moved through the Fox Valley over the weekend, officials said Sunday night, July 21. As of about 8:45 p.m. Sunday, the We Energies Outage Map showed more than 40,000 customers without power in the Fox Valley.

We Energies officials said crews continued to work nonstop, making repairs as safely and quickly as possible. Crews would continue to work around the clock until all customers affected by the severe storms were restored.

Below is a statement released by We Energies Sunday night:

"We Energies continues to recover from one of the most powerful storms to the Fox Valley in the past 20 years. Winds above 80 miles an hour caused extensive damage to our networks. We’re rebuilding circuits in hard hit areas in and around Appleton. This storm was so strong that as it continued east it took out power to more than 800,000 utility customers in Michigan.

We Energies workers have successfully restored power to more than 60,000 customers since Friday evening. Crews from other Midwest utilities have been arriving to help. We will have almost 1,000 field and support personnel dedicated to power restoration tomorrow and we expect to continue to make significant progress.

We thank our customers for their patience and our crews appreciate the prayers for their safety that have also been conveyed in calls and social media messages."

More than 200 employees were on the ground Sunday, along with utility crews from neighboring states, to assist with clearing downed wires, poles, and trees so officials could begin power restoration.

Officials reported more than 700 wires down, 50 power poles snapped and broken, and more than 600 trees or branches that fell into equipment.

Throughout the night, We Energies crews patrolled the main lines to clear these hazards, and continued to do so during the day on Sunday.

We Energies crews were also responding to fire and police calls for downed lines and trees to ensure the public’s safety.

Customers were encouraged to stay at least 25 feet from power lines that are down and anything that is touching them.

We Energies asked for the public's help reporting power lines and poles that are down to 800-662-4797.