Irene Leaves Scattered Damage Behind in Arlington; Many Unscathed
Sunday saw sunny skies and a lot of cleaning up. About 4,300 homes remain without power as of 6:40 p.m.
A clear sky and 80-degree weather brought Arlingtonians out from hiding Sunday, as what's now Tropical Storm Irene moved north -- giving businesses a boost and homeowners a chance to clean up debris.
Harry's Tap Room had a busy afternoon Sunday -- a big help after a slow Saturday night, one that saw the bar close early thanks to Irene.
"We didn't lose power, and this morning everything around us that was supposed to be open was open," said Rodney Flowers, a host at the popular Clarendon restaurant.
Whitlow's on Wilson also emerged from the storm unscathed. Even the rooftop bar evaded damage and opened for business Sunday aternoon.
"We locked everything down," Assistant General Manager Nadim Kouttab said. "We moved anything that could have been damaged and took every precautionary measure to ensure we'd survive the storm."
But in Arlington's tree-lined neighborhood streets, evidence of Irene was much more apparent.
A tree fell on North Jackson Street between 17th and Herndon, bringing down an above-ground power line and knocking out electricity to four houses. One neighbor, off to find somewhere to charge his cell phone, was unsure of when the county and Dominion Power would be out to fix the damage.
"I'm not sure how much priority four houses get," said the neighbor, who asked not to be identified.
Arlington County reported earlier in the day that Irene brought down at least 75 trees, including 11 that involved power lines. Downed trees totally or partially blocked 35 streets.
The county does not yet have detailed damage estimates. Officials could not say how many or what types of emergency calls were received during the storm.
About 4,300 homes were still without power as of 6:40 p.m., down from 14,000 early Sunday morning.
The county is urging residents to stay away from any downed power lines and the surrounding debris. Where trees tangle with power lines, Dominion will have to shut off electricity before removal can begin.
Some homes had better luck with Irene.
Sally Cranney and her family were out Sunday clearing leaves and sticks from the front yard of their Danville Street home.
They didn't lose power, but they lost part of their vacation to Long Beach Island in New Jersey, which was supposed to start Sunday. Residents are being allowed back onto that island after a mandatory evacuation, but Cranney's family is waiting to see if there is damage to the home they rented.
"People got sent out, and now we're waiting to get in," Cranney said. "But anyway, it's a beautiful day to rake leaves."