4/12/2013 8:18:00 AM 1,400 still without power in Jackson, Martin counties
Day four of the ice storm restoration continues at Federated Rural Electric in Jackson.
40 linemen are working on power restoration including 10 Federated linemen, two linemen from Brown County REA, two from BENCO Electric and 26 from Karian Peterson Power Line Contracting.
"We are down to 1,400 members who need power yet after a high of 2,200 yesterday," said Joe Marathaler, Federated's operations manager. "We are making steady progress and appreciate the co-op members' patience. This is the worst storm to hit Federated in the last four decades. In addition, Federated members with downed wires from their meter to the house or outbuildings need to call an electrician for those repairs, Federated crews will not be fixing them. Federated is responsible for connections up to the meter."
This morning crews will be working in the following areas: Karian Peterson crews will be working in the following areas rebuilding lines: Alba Township, Wilder substation's east and west circuits. Brown County REA will be working south of Lakefield rebuilding lines. Federated's line crews will be working in Enterprise, Ewington and Rost Townships. Line crews will be starting at daylight and will continue as late as possible.
OUTAGE RESTORATION UPDATE "Federated members should still prepare themselves that these power outages could last an extended period of time," stated Richard Burud, Federated's general manager. "Fill up the fuel tank for the generator, go to a neighbor/friend's house that has power and be prepared for the worst. Reach out to your elderly neighbor who may need some assistance."
Federated restores power based on returning the most customers at a time. For example, priority is given to restoring a substation, which may have hundreds off, then major distribution three-phase lines, then single phase lines before restoring individual outages.
Members worried about their freezers should call the U.S. Department of Agriculture's special Meat and Poultry Hotline at 1-800-535-4555. A good rule of thumb is that food in a full freezer will stay frozen for about two days. Food in a half full freezer will last about one day. Do not open the door unnecessarily.
Members buying new generators need to be careful to not backfeed electricity on to the power lines; linemen could be shocked thinking these lines are dead while restoring power. Pull the breaker at the meter, plug only certain items into the generator or contact your local electrician.
Federated is a Touchstone Energy Cooperative serving 5,000 members in Jackson and Martin Counties.