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Much of Fallston, Fountain Green eerily dark Tuesday night; power back Wednesday

A couple of areas of Harford County particularly hard hit by power outages from Storm Sandy were Fallston and Fountain Green, where many businesses and homes were still dark Tuesday night.

Wednesday morning, however, power had restored to much of Fallston and to Fountain Green, and life appeared to be getting back to normal.

It was a far different story Tuesday, night, however.

The entire Route 1 commercial strip in Fallston from the Bel Air Bypass to the Baltimore County line did not have power around 7:30 p.m. Tuesday.

Traffic signals were out at major intersections, including at Routes 1 and 147 and the Bypass, where a Maryland State Police trooper was directing traffic. The State Police Bel Air Barrack is at the intersection.

The sight at the intersection was eerie, especially with the sprawling Jones Junction car dealership complex dark and silent.

Route 147, Harford Road, was still blocked off at Route 152 by a State Highway Administration dump truck, as it had been since early morning, because of trees down on wires, according to the State Highway Administration.

Other side roads leading to the Little Gunpowder Falls, like Laurel Brook Road, had high water warning signs on them. Connolly Road, which crosses a flood prone creek near the Humane Society of Harford County, was closed between Harford and Mountain Roads Tuesday and Wednesday because of problem with downed electric wires.

In old Fallston, the hum of home generators could be heard late Tuesday night, and a utility repair truck was observed driving in the area; however, most homes were completely dark.

The situation in Fallston had improved noticeably by Wednesday morning.

Power was finally restored to the Old Fallston neighborhood around 1 a.m. Wednesday. Power was also back Wednesday morning along the Route 1 commercial strip, where southbound traffic was noticeably heavy shortly before 8 a.m. The traffic signals at Route 1 and the Bel Air Bypass and at Route 1 and Route 152 were fully functioning.

High water signs were gone along local roads in the area; however, a State Highway Administration dump truck continued to block Route 147 at Route 152, and a state trooper was directing traffic at the intersection. Signals were also out at the Bel Air Bypass and Route 24 just outside Bel Air, as had been the case Tuesday night.

The Route 147 (Harford Road) closure still extended from Route 152 in Fallston to Fork Road in Baltimore County. A large tree fell over wires and was blocking the roadway, SHA spokesperson David Buck said at 8:45 a.m. Wednesday.

The wires had to be deactivated by BGE crews before the trees can be removed by road crews, and then the utility needs to do restoration work, Buck said.

"This situation is driven by BGE," Buck said. "Once they are done, we should be able to get it open pretty quickly, but at this time I don't have an estimate when that will be."

The road was reopened sometime Wednesday afternoon.

Harford County had announced Tuesday that the Fallston Library would be closed again Wednesday because the building was still without power. Because county government is also closed again Wednesday, the Roni Chenowith Activities Center in Fallston was also be closed.

Fountain Green

Fountain Green was also very dark Tuesday night.

Typically, one of the busier intersections in Harford County, the crossroads of Routes 22 and 543 was equally eerie. The only activity was that of Maryland State Police troopers keeping drivers from crossing Route 22 on 543.

The usually busy Wawa and Royal Farms were dark, as was the entire Amyclae shopping center. Unlike the fast food joints that did have electricity, Burger King wasn't serving any burgers to the thousands still in the dark.

Neighborhoods surrounding the intersection were most dark, with a few homes being lit by generator power.

The Tuesday night darkness stretched along most of Route 543 from Fountain Green to Hickory just north of Bel Air, where police were also stationed at numerous intersections to keep them safe.

Outages in Hickory were a little more sporadic - Waffle House and 7-Eleven were all lit up and serving customers, but the new McDonald's in the same shopping center and Wawa across the street were silent.

By Wednesday morning, however, the traffic signal at the busy Route 22/543 intersection was working again, the SHA's Buck said, as was the signal at 543 and the Hickory Bypass.

Many homes and businesses in the Fountain Green area got their power back early Wednesday morning. Area convenience stores, fast food restaurants and other businesses were open Wednesday morning.

This updated version contains revised information about the Route 147 closure from previous versions.

Check back with http://www.exploreharford.com for updates.

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