Well, just felt like making another update about the storm. It's so odd that we're here in our nice powered home but so many things around us just aren't up and running. You should have seen the run on the one open gas station I passed on the way home. Not too easy to find ice and bottled water around here I've also heard. Some of the cities are making arrangements to have water primarily, but, also some food trucked in and distributed throughout affected neighborhoods. Many locations have instituted curfews.
Thank the Lord that the temperatures are to a more bearable level instead of what they were earlier in the week.
I read on the StLToday website that what had passed through the town where my Mom and Stepdad live wasn't a tornado afterall, just very strong winds. Approx. 50-80% of her town is without power as of the last report this morning. So, I'm still a little worried about my parents as I can't raise them on the landline or mom's cell, but, there are no deaths or serious injuries reported so I will try not to get too upset about the lack of contact. My Grandfather lives a little south of Mom, and even more of his town was damaged, but, again, personal injury reports on the news haven't got me concerned, and I know he's got my Aunts and cousins around. I look forward to when the lines of communication are fully open again though. :)
A spokesperson on the local news from Ameren UE (or electrical services provider in the region) says that the biggest gains in restoring power will be made today and Sunday, but, they likely won't reach 100% of service until Thursday. At last update, we had over 370,000 customers without power, at the height of each storm, it was well over half a million.
We're now currently at the restoration point we had reached after Wednesday's storm before Friday's storms knocked back out those customers and then some. Everyone there has been working long hours fixing things up. I also saw many people out cutting up trees and performing some general cleanup throughout their neighborhoods.
According to news outlets, there isn't a hotel room to be had within at least 60 miles, and all open restaurants are being flooded with patrons eager to have a proper meal. Since we've had power most of the time, we're able to prepare food and everything... ;) but, let me tell you, I'd prefer to eat out right now. Although I will resist the urge, I think, to track down an open restaurant and leave the spot I would have taken up to someone who doesn't have the option of cooking at home, as I do.
While there have been as few as half a dozen deaths in the region due to these storms, there have been many injuries from major to minor, and I'm sure there will continue to be new ones as cleanup continues. Why not take this as a reminder to go out and Donate Some Blood if you are able.