Powerful Wind Storm, Scorching Heat Hit Eastern United States

A destructive storm, with 90-mile-per-hour winds, knocks power out across Eastern U.S. amid record heat wave.

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Extreme heat and fierce storms left millions hot and powerless across the Eastern United States this weekend, causing 17 deaths and widespread damage, CBS News reports.

[Photos: Summer Storm Leaves East Coast in the Dark]

A powerful wind storm known as a derecho formed near Chicago Friday and ravaged much of the Midwest and East on a 600-mile march eastward that took less than 10 hours. Its 90-mile-per-hour winds caused much of the damage, leaving more than 2 million were without power Monday morning. Parts of Indiana, Ohio, West Virginia, Maryland, Virginia, New Jersey, and Washington went dark as a result of the storm.

The outages coincided with record heat, as residents of more than 30 cities experienced temperatures exceeding 100 degrees, many without the comfort of of air-conditioning. Columbia, SC and Nashville, TN both saw the mercury rise to 109 degrees, the highest temperature on record, while Atlanta's high reached 106 degrees, also a record.

In Washington, D.C. the temperature reached 104 degrees on Friday, a record high for June according to the National Weather Service, with a heat index of 111 degrees (which factors in humidity).

Washington was among the cities left reeling from Friday's derecho.

"When a catastrophic event like this hits and when you have 70 mph winds and rains, there are going to be outages," Thomas Graham, PepCo region president, told CBS News.

Pepco in the District of Columbia, Dominion Power in Virginia, and BGE in Maryland all reported hundreds of thousands of outages, which could persist until as late as Friday, according to the utilities.

In the meantime, D.C.-area residents have experienced long lines for gas, dark intersections, and down trees throughout the metro area.

All three utilities reported bringing in power crews from across the country to address the outages. Pepco's outage map shows the west and northwest areas of the District are experiencing the most outages. Dominion's outage map show Fairfax and Fredericksburg experiencing the most outages, while BGE's shows northeast Baltimore experienced the most.

Rodney Blevins, vice president of electric distribution at Dominon Power, said the weekend's derecho caused the third-worst power outage in Virginia's history.

Seth Cline is a reporter with U.S. News and World Report. Contact him at scline@usnews.com or follow him on Twitter.