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Storm sweeps through Philadelphia region, some outages persist

The Philadelphia area awoke to storm damage and power outages this morning after the latest band of strong thunderstorms swept through the region overnight.

The storm brought heavy rain, strong wind that toppled trees and power lines, and lightning strikes that lit up the sky.

There were reports of large trees knocked down throughout the area, though no significant injuries were immediately reported. Dime-size hail was reported in Elverson, Chester County, and authorities were investigating whether several overnight blazes were caused by lightning strikes.

Power outages were less extensive than during other recent storms, but more than 1,700 customers continued to lack electricity across the area as of shortly before noon, according to Peco and PSE&G figures. That number was down, however, from the 5,000-plus without power early this morning.

The rain also caused damage to the alarm system at a Center City high-rise, forcing authorities to evacuate residents at 1216 Walnut St., the Philadelphia Fire Department said.

And signal problems disrupted several Regional Rail lines this morning. Inbound West Trenton trains and trains on the Wilmington-Newark line were running with delays, but SEPTA said those issues were resolved by late morning.

The National Weather Service says scattered showers and thunderstorms could continue this morning, with the afternoon expected to be mostly sunny. Forecasters are calling for a high temperature of 84 degrees.