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CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (WDEF) — A storm caused outages and extensive damage in the Chattanooga area.

On Wednesday afternoon, the storm packed quite a punch, knocking a tree on a house on Westwood Avenue.

In the back, the homeowners, along with family and friends, worked are to clear the yard.

“This was really different than all the other storms we’ve had. It was very fast and sudden and extremely scary,” said Noel Bergquist, who lives across the street.

The power is out for all the houses in the neighborhood except Bergquist’s home, thanks to her generator. She is helping her neighbors who have pets.

“Because my house has a generator, put in by Tennessee Solar Solutions, we were able to take some of their birds that couldn’t take the temperatures tonight and we are able to keep them in my house. And we can also provide hot water and showers for people who need them after working outside to clean up the yards.”

Nearby, roads were closed off due to downed power poles and crews worked to fix the problem.
Dwight Heath witnessed the storm.

“So I came upstairs to watch TV for awhile and then the storm came through and I could hear the rain starting to fall and then the rain started coming down in sheets and it was pretty awesome,” Heath said.

Right across, from where Heath lives a tree fell in the middle of the road, shutting it down.

“If I didn’t know any better I’d say it was a tornado, but it wasn’t. It was most probably straight line winds,” Heath said.

While some people are left in the dark as crews work to restore power, Bergquist is thankful.

“Just thinking this morning when my generator rotated on and off that I hadn’t used it yet. I come home tonight and it is running and my house is running. I have a lot to offer not only to my neighbors, but it also makes it very comfortable for me,” Bergquist said.

EPB officials say at the height of the storm 5,500 customers were without power. They say the smart grid prevented about 9,700 customers from having an outage.

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