The State Highway Administration said Monday that all lanes of Route 140 have been reopened to traffic in the wake of a summer storm last week that sent utility poles onto vehicles on the roadway.
On the night of Aug. 7, high winds toppled roughly 20 utility poles along a stretch of Route 140 between Gorsuch Road and Market Street. Thirty-three adults and 14 children were trapped when the utility poles either landed on top of their vehicles or boxed them in, according to a statement from the agency. No injuries were reported.
Once freed, the motorists were transported by school bus that evening to nearby Winters Mill High School.
State Highway Administrator William Pines called the damage from the storm “unprecedented in recent history,” and applauded the collaboration among his agency, the Maryland State Police and Baltimore Gas and Electric Co. to get the road cleared and restore power to affected customers. Upwards of 80,000 customers in the Baltimore area were affected by the storm late on Aug. 7.
Last week’s storm brought heavy rainfall and raging winds to the region, putting close to 30 million people under a tornado watch. The storm led to major power outages along the East Coast and left two dead. A 15-year-old boy was killed by a falling tree in South Carolina and a 28-year-old Florida man died after being struck by lightning.
No injuries were reported in Maryland, something Gov. Wes Moore called “both a combination of God’s grace, and a combination of a lot of hard work. ... This storm was real.”
National Weather Service meteorologist Chris Strong called the storm “one of the most impactful severe weather events across the mid-Atlantic that we have had in some time.”
Daniel Zawodny covers transportation for The Baltimore Banner as a corps member with Report For America, a national service organization that places emerging journalists with local newsrooms that cover underreported issues.