Rapid snow melt, heavy rain and then strong winds cooked up a troublesome stew of problems for Illinois Valley residents shortly after sundown Thursday.
As of 7:20 p.m. Thursday, power had been out for more than half an hour for the north-end shopping district of Peru, from 36th Street northward. Peru municipal electric crews were out working on it. Power was back on before 8 p.m.
A desk employee at a hotel on the north side of Peru said the outage lasted an hour and 20 minutes. She said most of the guests came to the lobby or ends of hallways where emergency lights were lit, and she assured them the outage was not just to the building but rather to the many neighboring locations in the business district.
Menard’s on the east side of Route 251 lost power for about 20 minutes Thursday around noon, but did not lose it in the longer power outage Thursday night that affected businesses west of Route 251 including at least part of Peru Mall and as far north as Taco Bell.
Target stayed open, secured the building and “made sure all of the guests were as comfortable as possible,” said assistant manager Aaron Pinter. A backup generator provided a fourth of the lighting the store normally would have. He said staff members with flashlights helped shoppers find their way around or find items to buy if they wished.
Pinter said power was out for about 45 minutes at Target.
Water from rain, melting snow and overwhelmed ditches had one lane of May Road in Peru flooded and the centerline obscured in some locations. Before sunset, barricades were up on flooded portions of Progress Boulevard southof 38th Street.
Signs that weren’t anchored securely were felled by the wind.
While there was trouble from water and wind in Peru, Wyanet firefighters were called about a sparking power line.