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Lightning strikes, causes power outage in northeast Brainerd

Stormy skies appear over Jenkins the evening of Tuesday, June 11. Denton Newman Jr/ Brainerd Dispatch1 / 4
Nisswa resident Doreen Mahoney captured images of small hail accumulating in the middle of a hailstorm Tuesday, June 11. Mahoney reported the hail came down about 12:15 p.m. and lasted for 20 minutes.2 / 4
Hail stones stand out on a deck, railing and sprinkle the grass halfway through a 20-minute hail storm in Nisswa. Photo by Doreen Mahoney3 / 4
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The lights went out in northeast Brainerd for a little over an hour Tuesday night, June 11, as a thunderstorm passed through.

Brainerd Public Utilities posted the power outage at 6:32 p.m. on its Facebook page stating, "The rain came and so did a power outage in Northeast Brainerd. Crews are out assessing what the weather brought."

Four BPU crews responded to the power outage. Power was out from 6:23-7:34 p.m.

BPU Superintendent Scott Magnuson did not have a number of residents without power Tuesday night, but said all of northeast Brainerd stretching out to the Brainerd Lakes Regional Airport was out.

Magnuson said lightning struck one of the city's pieces of electrical equipment, called a reclosure, causing the power outage. A reclosure's purpose is to help cut a power outage in half, Magnuson said.

"The lightning blew a hole in it," he said. "We have about 16-17 reclosures in Brainerd."

Earlier in the day, small hail covered the grass and decks in a brilliant white in what Nisswa resident Doreen Mahoney described as a 20-minute midday hail storm. Radar indicated an isolated storm was moving through southern Cass County into Crow Wing County. Later in the day, a line of thunderstorms formed bringing rain, wind and lightning to the Brainerd area as storms pushed across the state.