Some Mesa residents without power for over 24 hours following monsoon storm

Some neighborhoods in Mesa still don't have electricity as crews work to restore power following powerful monsoon storms.
Published: Jul. 18, 2022 at 8:57 PM MST
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MESA, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) - Across the Valley, people are still picking up the pieces after monsoon storms ripped through some neighborhoods Sunday night. The wind and rain were so intense they knocked down power poles, ripped trees out of the ground and even destroyed some homes.

A woman had to be saved from the rubble of her home early Monday morning near Gilbert Road and the State Route 87. The National Weather Service says given the extent of the damage, that area saw winds of 80 to 100 mph. As of 8 p.m. on Monday, people are still without power. This is forcing Valley residents to adjust and get creative to find ways to stay cool. An SRP power outages map shows the areas still dealing with problems.

Lee Noblitt’s thermostat inside his home read 91 degrees Monday evening. Sunday night’s storm knocked out the power in his Mesa neighborhood. “I’ve lived here since 1978 in this area, and it’s never been off this long,” Noblitt said.

We went inside Noblitt’s rental home, and you could instantly feel the heat. “No power. The only light you have is through the blinds. I have a battery-operated fan here I’ve been using to make it somewhat bearable. We have fans and everything, but none of them work,” he said.

Down the road, we found Diana Fout and her family sitting in their cars, trying to stay cool. “We have the air conditioning full blast in both of them,” Fout said. “It’s cooler out here right now than it is inside my house.”

Directly behind her home, crews have been working to restore power, but more damage is done as time passes. “We have lost all of our refrigerator and freezer stuff. We just went shopping for the week, so we’ve lost everything,” Fout said.

These Mesa residents weren’t alone. At the height of Sunday night’s storms, nearly 39,000 SRP customers were without power. There was extensive damage along SR 87 and McDowell Road. SRP says the storm knocked down more than 100 poles; however, many customers are back with power tonight. “I hear about it all the time on the news, but it hit us this time,” Noblitt said. “We will fix it and go on.”

We spoke with Mike Donley with Donley A/C and Plumbing. He says it is crucial to have a plan or know the nearest hotel you could go to if this happens. He says during the day, escape to somewhere like the mall or a library. “Or if your home gets struck by lightning, you could invest in a surge protector to protect your air conditioning unit like you would do for TV or computer and that might even save your air conditioning if you get hit by lightning,” Donley said.