Hundreds of thousands of people remained without power Monday morning after severe thunderstorms blew through North Texas on Sunday afternoon.
Oncor said there were about 214,000 people without power as of 2 p.m. Monday and it could be days before power is restored to everyone. The bulk of the outages are in Dallas County, about 200,000.
Across North Dallas and East Dallas, the storm tore down stop signs and large trees. Officials at the National Weather Service said winds reached up to 80 miles per hour at the storm’s peak on Sunday.
Oncor energy crews and contracted workers spent the day on Monday repairing downed power lines and restoring power to some 140,000 customers. At the peak of Sunday's storm, an estimated 350,000 homes and businesses were without electricity. More than 2,500 additional workers will join the restoration efforts on Tuesday.
As soon as the storm passed, people began working to clean up the debris in their neighborhood.
“I’ve lived here 40 years and I’ve never seen a storm like this in my entire life,” said North Dallas resident Brian Rafferty. “It was a clear day, like this, and all of a sudden the wind just started howling and within five minutes into the storm it tore down this entire tree and as you can see it’s just a mess.”
Dallas officials said their priority is getting traffic lights up and running. They ask residents to call 311 to report outages or downed trees. Officials say 41 percent of all traffic signals are affected. About 500 of them have no communication and need repair. More than 150 flashing red lights need to be reset.
The break in power caused some water mains to break across Dallas. The power will be back for all in a few days, but Oncor says it will take time.
Some Dallas residents without power were willing to spend $800 for a good night's sleep.
Mika Thomas is one of several North Dallas residents who went to Lowe's to buy the last of the pricy generators.
“Texas weather. Wait a second, and it will change,” he said. “We called around to some hotels last night. No one had availability.”
The Lowe’s lost power too, but it stayed open thanks to an industrial backup generator system. Store manager Scot Hendricks says they sold all 40 generators on Monday. Customers were in need of much more.
“We have a truck coming in tonight, so it’s in transit,” Hendricks said. “So it will be docked here shortly and we'll offload it to make sure we have some more for the customers.”
Several school districts canceled summer programs Monday due to the power outages -- Dallas, Richardson, Mesquite and Highland Park ISDs. Many of the campuses are without power and summer school, camps and feeding programs were canceled for the day.
Airlines were also trying to recover from flight cancellations on Sunday that leaked into Monday. Nearly 200 flights to and from DFW Airport were canceled on Monday and 60 were delayed. Dallas Love Field was faring better, with just one cancellation and 13 delays.
The storm was deadly, killing one person when a crane collapsed onto a midrise apartment building near downtown Dallas. Several other people were hospitalized due to injuries.
The 311 call center has received over a thousand service calls today for storm debris and 292 calls related to traffic signals. They're expecting another busy day on Tuesday.