The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

Big Story

October 29, 2012

VIDEO | Thousands lose power

(Continued)

JOHNSTOWN —

  • Somerset Pike, Route 985m near the Benscreek Church.
  • Route 403 near Tire Hill.
  • County Line Road from Copper Kettle Highway to Seven Springs.
  • Route 281 at the Confluence underpass.

PennDOT adds these roads were still closed this morning in Cambria and Bedford counties:

Cambria County

  • Ohio Street closed from intersection of Oakland Avenue in Lorain Borough to Wise Street in Geistown.

Bedford County:

  • Schellsburg/Scrubgrass Road closed from intersection of Scrubgrass Road to intersection of Beaver Dam Road in Kimmel Township.
  • Route 96 closed from Chestnut Street in New Paris to Bowser Road intersection in West St. Clair Township.
  • Lake Gordon Road closed to the intersection of Bud Shuster Highway in Cumberland Valley Township.

Cambria County dodged the Hurricane Sandy bullet despite a quickly rising Little Conemaugh River which had officials considering evacuations, Ron Springer, director of Cambria County Department of Emergency Management Services, said.

"We were very fortunate in Cambria County. Our rivers are okay," he said. "We were watching the Little Conemaugh and we had concerns about the Stonycreek."

The river flood watch started before 9 p.m. Monday when the Little Conemaugh in the East Conemaugh, and Franklin area into the city began rising quickly.

If it reached 85 percent of flood stage, residents would have been evacuated, Springer said.

But despite the rain, the water levels began decreasing and, as of this morning, are at about 50 percent of flood stage.

The 911 center received 125 calls Monday evening and over night, mostly power lines down and flooded basements, Springer said.

An emergency command center was set up to handle calls from residents with non-emergency concerns and questions, he said.

Downed trees, electric wires and flooded runways causing road closures accounted for the bulk of the problems in Somerset County late Monday and early today as a result of Hurricane Sandy, said Rick Lohr, head of Somerset County emergency management.

The heavy rain that pounded the state for hours turned into snow and slush in parts of Somerset County.

Lohr said that while all schools in the county are closed today, the Somerset County Courthouse is open and there have been no businesses reported closed.

There have been no reports of damage to homes or public infrastructure and no emergency evacuations due to the flooding, Lohr said one shelter has been opened.

The doors of St. Paul's Church in Somerset have been opened to provide shelter for residents of Village Way due to a power outage in the Brierwood section of Somerset.

 

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