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Severe Thunderstorms Knock Out Power For Thousands In Suburbs

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Updated 05/12/14 – 6 a.m.

(STMW) – Thunderstorms across the area Sunday knocked out power for thousands of people in the west, southwest and south suburbs and led to the cancelation of more than 100 flights at Chicago’s two airports.

A severe thunderstorm watch was in effect for central Cook, southwest Will, northwest Kankakee and all of Kendall counties for most of Sunday afternoon and night, according to the National Weather Service. The warning was in place for all of the Chicago area, including Lake and Porter counties in Indiana.

After the storms swept through the area, nearly 9,000 ComEd customers in the west, southwest and south suburbs were left without power, according to ComEd. The majority of outages were reported near Harvey in Blue Island, where more than 6,300 customers were without power Sunday night.

More than 130 flights were canceled at O’Hare International Airport as a result of the storms and some flights were delayed more than an hour. Midway International Airport saw “minor” cancelations, with some flight delays last up to 30 minutes, according to the Chicago Department of Aviation.

On Sunday evening, trains along the Union Pacific North Line between Ogilvie Transportation Center and Kenosha, Wis., were also delayed because of the weather in the area, according to Metra’s website.

Although Sunday started out warm and sunny in the Chicago area, the thunderstorms — bringing heavy rain, up to 70 mph winds and quarter-size hail — hit late Sunday afternoon, said Ricky Castro, a weather service meteorologist. The severe thunderstorm watch was called off about 8:30 p.m.

There was a minor chance of tornados during the day, but there were no funnel cloud sightings in the Chicago area throughout the day, according to the weather service

Monday will bring unseasonably warm temperatures that could reach the upper 80s, with a 30 percent chance of rain in the morning.

Meteorologists expect the balmy weather to shift to thunderstorms after midnight Monday, with a 70 percent chance of precipitation.

The storms will likely stretch into Tuesday morning, with highs hovering in the upper 60s, forecasters said.

(Source: Sun-Times Media Wire © Chicago Sun-Times 2014. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)