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Clean up underway after storm tears through Billings

Posted at 12:57 PM, Jul 26, 2022
and last updated 2022-07-26 15:07:48-04

BILLINGS - Every day is different at the Sourdough Bagel in downtown Billings, but for Bonny Perkins, this was a first.

On Sunday, water began pouring from the ceiling. Perkins believes it collected in a courtyard above her and had no other place to go.

"I was really freaked out because I was standing in a puddle of water. We have so much electrical stuff here, and I don't know. I was like, am I going to get electrocuted?" says Perkins.

Not far away, city streets were quickly becoming reservoirs as falling leaves from hail-battered trees clogged storm drains.

"This rain came in and was really heavy for a long period of time, so it overrun the storm sewer system. They are just not designed to carry that much water that quickly," says Derick Miller, Billings street traffic division manager.

Then there was hail from the west end to downtown Billings. The reports of hail were anywhere from 0.2" to 1½" hail stones.

The hail and wind caused a lot of damage, especially to the trees.

"The South Side was one of the hardest hit. So we are starting off down there cleaning limbs getting streets opened up so people can travel through," Miller said.

It's a mess that will take days for the city to clean up.