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Severe thunderstorm slams western Vermont

It was a spring storm to rival any subtropical monster. The severe thunderstorm that whipped through the western Vermont May 27 knocked out power to about 24,000 CVPS customers at its peak around 1 a.m. High winds took down trees, power lines, and flung debris into cars and houses.

In downtown Middlebury, a venerable shade tree was blown down in from of the Addison COunty Chamber of Commerce. Elsewhere in the college town, streets are littered with branches, leaves and other debris.

Rutland City area residents huddled indoors against the big storm which downed trees and produced scattered outages around the county.

As of 8 a.m., about 13,200 CVPS customers are without power in Windham, Rutland, Addison and Bennington counties. We've had reports of wind gusts up to 70 mph, and severe wind and tree damage in the Brattleboro and Poultney areas. About 8,200 customers are without power in Windham County, 3,300 in Rutland County, and 1,200 in Addison County, with some scattered outages across the state.

CVPS has acquired more than 20 outside contract crews from Maine, New Hampshire, Connecticut and Vermont that are mobilizing to the utility's Brattleboro and Poultney districts to assist in the restoration effort there. CVPS will also be moving line crews from other parts of the state to the affected areas as they finish their restoration efforts.

The CVPS system sustained transmission damage last night that was quickly repaired, however officials said they have reports of trees down "everywhere" in the Brattleboro area and many broken poles.

Crews will continue to work through the weekend, however there may be some customers without power into Saturday.

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