Rochester, MN (KROC-AM News) - Thousands of homes and businesses in Rochester were left without power when a line of severe thunderstorms delivered damaging winds and heavy rain to southeastern Minnesota this afternoon.

Rochester Public Utilities dispatched all of its available crews to work on fixing storm damage and restoring service to customers throughout the city. At the peak, RPU indicated over 4500 homes and businesses were affected by the outages. One of the largest, which accounted for about half of the total number of customers involved, was in an area of northwest Rochester north of 41st Street and west of 18th Avenue.

The National Weather Service says it received a report of a wind gust exceeding 60 miles an hour in northeast Rochester, 1-inch hail in Chatfield and an uprooted 9 inch diameter tree in the Douglas area as the heaviest of the storm cells moved through the Rochester area. The latest rainfall total at the Rochester Airport was nearly 1.4 inches, while over 6-tenths of an inch was recorded at the Mayo One helipad on top of St. Mary’s Hospital.

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