ASSN OF MO ELECTRIC CO-OPS
All-night Effort Restores Power to Many
Electric cooperatives in southeast Missouri worked through the night to restore power in an area of the state pounded by the latest winter storm. Ice on lines, falling trees and wind caused outages to peak at around 20,000 for three electric cooperatives. As of 7 a.m. Friday, Feb. 22, approximately 6,800 members were without power.
Black River Electric, Fredericktown, saw its outage numbers spike after five substations owned by M&A Electric Power Cooperative went offline for a short period of time. Power was restored to the substations around 11 p.m., reducing those without power to 4,400 today. Crews worked all night and will remain on the job today, reinforced by fresh crews from electric cooperatives out of the damage area.
At Ozark Border Electric Cooperative in Poplar Bluff, crews also worked hard to restore power. By Friday morning, outages were down to 2,000 from a high of 3,500 Thursday evening. Ozark Border crews are also being assisted by fresh crews from other electric cooperatives.
Howell-Oregon Electric Cooperative, West Plains, also experienced a number of outages due in large part to high winds. They are now mopping up the last of 1,400 outages from Thursday night. Power remained out for 300 members, mostly in Oregon and Shannon counties.
SEMO Electric Cooperative, Sikeston, was in similar shape, going house to house to energize the last remaining members. At the height of the storm, SEMO had 600 without power. Its crews and contractors fought deep mud, along with ice, snow, wind and cold temperature in the battle with Mother Nature.
Electric cooperatives suffering outages benefit from a mutual assistance program coordinated by the Association of Missouri Electric Cooperatives based in Jefferson City. Since 1948, the association has assisted electric cooperative power restoration efforts by finding crews, equipment and materials out of harmís way and sending them to those who need assistance.
(CONTACT: Jim McCarty, Association of Missouri Electric Cooperatives (573) 680-2451)