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Power had been restored to most homes in Lincoln early Monday after wet, heavy snow fell throughout the day before.

The National Weather Service said 3.5 inches of snow fell in the Lincoln area Sunday and up to 5.5 inches fell in some parts of Lancaster County, causing large tree limbs to snap, which blocked several roads and downed power lines throughout the city.

LES crews worked well into the night to restore power to a circuit from 20th to 33rd streets and Nebraska 2 to Van Dorn Street. That circuit, which was impacting about 1,700 customers, had power restored around midnight only to briefly lose service again due to another fallen tree limb.

"There's just a lot of trees in that area, so it's taking a while to restore power to that specific circuit," LES spokeswoman Rachel Barth said Sunday. "We had a lot of people back on at one point, but trees just kept falling in that area."

By early Monday morning, crews were chipping away at about 99 isolated outages throughout the city.

Earlier in the day Sunday, about 7,000 customers had lost power throughout Lincoln. In most cases, LES crews were able to repair the downed power lines and restore power quickly, Barth said.

Barth said residents should contact LES by calling 402-467-7678 if they notice trees in power lines and can report a power outage by calling 1-888-365-2412. Outages can also be reported online at les.com/report.

Lincoln Fire and Rescue Battalion Chief Troy Hurd said he expected more tree limbs to fall overnight as temperatures dipped into the mid-20s, potentially causing the wet snow to turn to ice.

"It's been steady all afternoon, then you add in the normal medical calls and all of that, so yes, it's been a busy day," Hurd said Sunday evening. "We're expecting a heavy workload (Sunday night), but we're ready to go."

In addition to downed tree limbs and power lines, many traffic signals throughout Lincoln became packed with snow and weren't visible as of Sunday night. City officials urged drivers to treat intersections as a four-way stop if traffic signals weren't visible or were without power. 

The Lincoln Police department reported 24 traffic accidents in Lincoln, which was about the same as last Sunday when it was raining. The snow also forced the cancellation of several events in Lincoln on Sunday. The College View Farmers Market and the Nebraska soccer match against Michigan State were both cancelled because of weather concerns, and all Lincoln City Libraries closed early. 

Areas just southwest of Lancaster County received even more snow, according to the National Weather Service. Some areas of Saline County reported up to 7.5 inches, with Tobias getting 6.8 inches and Crete reporting 5.5 inches.

In Omaha, more than 50,000 utility customers were without power. The Omaha Public Power District says 51,000 customers lacked power at 5 p.m. Sunday. That was down from a peak of about 56,000.

This is a developing story. Stay with JournalStar.com for updates.

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Weekend editor

Alex Lantz is a sports copy editor.

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