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Region recovers from Tuesday's storms

Local trains were back on schedule and power was restored to area homes and businesses Wednesday, as Marylanders cleaned up and repaired damage caused by the previous night's heavy rainstorms.

The Maryland Transit Administration reported Wednesday morning that trains on the MARC Penn Line were operating on schedule after crews fixed signals that lost power after the storms hit.

"We had some issues with signals being out between Baltimore and Washington, and they caused significant delays on the Penn Line" between Perryville and Washington Tuesday evening and Wednesday morning, said MTA spokesman Terry Owens. As of 9 a.m. Wednesday, Owens said, "power has been restored" to the signals and trains were running on schedule.

The malfunctioning signals caused delays of 30 minutes to two hours Tuesday evening and Wednesday morning for Penn Line riders, and some trains were canceled, Owens said.

When signals don't work properly, trains are required to limit speeds to 15 miles per hour, and that resulted in delays up and down the route, Owens said. About 20,000 people use the Penn Line daily.

Amtrak trains also experienced delays between Baltimore and Washington because of malfunctioning signals, and resumed regular schedules after the signals regained power.

Storms began moving through Central Maryland on Tuesday, producing heavy rain and gusts of up to 60 mph.

About 15,000 customers were without power at the height of the storms, around 5 p.m., said Baltimore Gas and Electric Co. spokeswoman Racheal Lighty, with Anne Arundel, Baltimore and Harford counties and Baltimore City most heavily affected. Overall, about 29,600 BGE customers lost power as a result of the storms, and electricity was restored by 7 p.m., she said.

Parts of Harford County were among the hardest-hit areas, with the central part heavily affected by flooding, said Bob Thomas, a county government spokesman.

"Portions of [Route] 924 were completely covered with water at least 4 inches high," Thomas wrote in an email Tuesday afternoon. "Trees were uprooted in the Bel Air area."

As of about 5:20 p.m. Tuesday, Thomas said he had received no word of any serious accidents, but said the "possibility exists for standing water in low-lying areas of the county for the next 10 [to] 12 hours."

Areas of Baltimore County and Baltimore City, such as Millers Island and Fells Point, experienced storm-related flooding Tuesday. The National Weather Service lifted its small-craft advisory for the Chesapeake Bay as of 5 p.m. Wednesday.

Bryna Zumer of The Aegis contributed to this article.

Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun
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