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Half a million from Colorado to Michigan without power following wind storm

Gusts recorded at 100 mph
Rockies Weather wind
Posted at 6:17 AM, Dec 16, 2021
and last updated 2021-12-16 13:09:03-05

Cities and towns in the Great Plains and the Midwest on Wednesday buckled down as a record-breaking wind storm blew through the region.

The strong gusts, some of which exceeded 100 mph, damaged homes and buildings, pushed over semitrailers and sent debris flying high into the air.

The strong winds also blew over electricity poles, causing significant power outages in the region. PowerOutage.us reports that more than half a million customers are currently without electricity in eight states. Those states stretch as far west as Colorado and as far east as Michigan.

As of Thursday morning, about half of those outages are in Michigan. In Fruitport, located in the western part of the state, winds ripped the roof off of an elementary school.

Scripps station KSHB reports that wind gusts in Kansas City at times exceeded over 100 mph. At one point on Wednesday evening, the air traffic control tower at the Kansas City International Airport was evacuated, and all flights were diverted. Operations at the airport have since returned to normal.

The Denver airport, a major travel hub, also saw significant travel delays Wednesday. Scripps station KMGH reported Wednesday more than 420 flights were delayed and that at least 120 flights were canceled by 11 a.m. local time Wednesday

Scripps station KMTV reports that one home was damaged by a falling tree in Council Bluffs, Iowa.

"A tree came falling down, and my dad and I were like, that was some loud thunder," Kaden Miller told KMTV. "We went to the front part and looked out that front window right there and we looked out and there was a tree that crashed on our house."