Three Major Utilities Starting Restoration In Eastern Kentucky
Thousands of Kentuckians could face power outages at their homes for days to come. The second winter storm in less than a week again hit southeastern and eastern Kentucky hard.
While Kentucky Utilities’ customers saw significant power loss last week, far fewer are impacted this go round. With yet another system expected to come through Wednesday into Thursday, KU Spokesman Daniel Lowry said efforts are taken to help crews with the work at hand. “We rotate our crews out and we have more than 40 operation centers across the state with folks manning those,” said Lowry.
Some of the hardest hit electrical systems are in Kentucky Electric Cooperatives’ coverage area. Those co-ops alone saw well over 100,000 outages. Statewide the PowerOutage.US map has indicated outages hovering around 145,000.
Well over a third of Kentucky Power’s customers face electrical outages in the wake of a second winter storm in the Commonwealth. Utility Spokesperson Cindy Wiseman said the Ashland, Boyd County, Carter County area was again hit hard. Wiseman noted crews are in restoration mode, but that could continue into next week. “We restore power in phases, so for the first few days we do a lot of damage assessment. We also have transmission service out in a lot of areas and those are the large high wire towers that you might see on a mountainside,” explained Wiseman.
The restoration work will likely become even more complicated the next few days. Wiseman added the region is forecast to see four to six inches of heavy wet snow by week’s end.
More than 1300 in Madison County have experience power loss. Bluegrass Energy Community Relations Manager Denise Meyers said counties south of Berea have seen more outages. Meyers said local crews are receiving some assistance. “We restore power in phases, so for the first few days we do a lot of damage assessment. We also have transmission service out in a lot of areas and those are the large high wire towers that you might see on a mountainside,” noted Meyers.
Some of the largest areas of power outage are in eastern and southeastern Kentucky. Kentucky Electric Cooperatives Vice President Joe Arnold noted it could be several days, even weeks, before all customers see electricity.
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