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Thousands without power across northern Illinois after freezing rain storm

ComED crews have been working since Wednesday night to restore power across the region
Maria Gardener Lara
Outages across northern Illinois following freezing rain storm.

Since Wednesday night ComED crews have been dealing with power outages across northern Illinois. They were caused by a heavy, icy rain that led to a large number of downed power lines. Many lines were brought down by falling tree limbs that broke under the weight of the ice, others by the burden of the ice itself.

According to Tom Dominguez, a communications manager for ComED, there are still 86,000 customers without power.

“We've been able to restore 125,000 of those customers, which means the storm that ran through all of the northern third of Illinois, it affected about 212,000 customers.”

Dominguez adds that ComED expects to restore the power to about 80% of those 86,000 remaining customers by this evening. He said the remaining 20% will likely remain without power until the end of day Saturday.


As of late Thursday morning, in Rockford there were currently 7,000 reported outages attributed to the ice storm out of some 71,000 customers. In Freeport there were 600 outages out of 13,000 customers, and in DeKalb, 160 outages out of 17,000 customers. There were no reported outages in Aurora.

According to ComEd, should anyone come across a downed power line, it's important for them to always assume that the power line is still energized and still dangerous, so never approach a downed power line. Instead call ComED immediately at 1-800-334-766

Juanpablo covers environmental, substandard housing and police-community relations. He’s been a bilingual facilitator at the StoryCorps office in Chicago. As a civic reporting fellow at City Bureau, a non-profit news organization that focuses on Chicago’s South Side, Ramirez-Franco produced print and audio stories about the Pilsen neighborhood. Before that, he was a production intern at the Third Coast International Audio Festival and the rural America editorial intern at In These Times magazine. Ramirez-Franco grew up in northern Illinois. He is a graduate of Knox College.