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Posted at 12:31 PM ET, 07/04/2011

Bicyclist killed in storm identified; power outages persist in N.Va.

A bicyclist who was struck by a falling tree and killed during Sunday night’s thunderstorms was passing through upper Montgomery County on a two-day bike trip with a friend, police said. 

Neil R. Reich, 56, of Forrest Hills, N.Y., was biking from Harpers Ferry, W.Va., to Washington with a friend when the weather worsened, according to National Park Service spokesman Bill Line.

About 7:50 p.m., Reich stopped to put on his rain coat on the C&O Canal towpath near White’s Ferry as rain drops started falling, Line said. His friend continued biking along the towpath for a bit and stopped to wait for Reich. 

When Reich did not arrive, his friend retraced his path, found Reich had been knocked off his bicycle and called 911, Line said.

Reich was struck in the head and pronounced dead at the scene.   

Sunday’s storm knocked down trees and power lines throughout much of the area, including Capitol Hill in the District, the Cherrydale section of Arlington County and parts of the George Washington Memorial parkway in Northern Virginia, leaving more than 40,000 homes and businesses in the Washington area without electricity.

At least one gust of wind was measured at 58 mph Sunday night in the District. Flights were held on the ground for more than an hour at Reagan National Airport.

Arlington County police fielded about 85 calls between 7:30 p.m. and midnight on Sunday about fallen trees and power lines, elevator calls, and outside fires, police said.

Power problems persisted into Monday in Northern Virginia, where Dominion was reporting 6,073 without electricity as of noon. Many of the outages were concentrated in the Arlington area, particularly on and around North Glebe Road.

Most Maryland outages had been cleared up by Monday. As of noon, Pepco was reporting 372 customers without power, including 252 in Prince George’s County and 119 in the District. BGE was reporting another 52 without power in Prince George’s County.

Although the storm system has moved to the south, there’s still a chance of more storms in the area late today, according to The Post’s Capital Weather Gang.

Have photos of the storm or its aftermath? Submit them here.

By  |  12:31 PM ET, 07/04/2011

Categories:  Weather

 
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