Red Lake Nation News - Babaamaajimowinan (Telling of news in different places)

Early morning storm causes damages and power outages in Beltrami County - P5

 

The items below were taken from the Beltrami Electric Cooperative Facebook page and gave an accurate account of a bad storm that hit Beltrami County about 5 AM on Friday, June 28, 2018.

Beltrami Electric Cooperative

June 29 at 8:24 AM ·

Outage Update: We are still evaluating the damage left in the wake of the storm that moved through this morning. The hardest hit areas are in our northern service area, including Waskish, Kelliher, Red Lake and Redby. We have numerous poles broken, lines down, trees on lines, etc. We have over 4,700 members without power. At this point, we are working to restore power to our substations that are out, which allows us to get the most members restored. We also have crews working on pole replacements. This takes more time, as we have to do emergency locate calls to Gopher State One Call - as other facilities run underground in these areas. We ask for your patience as we work on restoration efforts, we are all hands on deck, sending every available person out.

Beltrami Electric Cooperative

June 29 at 9:46 AM ·

As a result of the severe thunderstorm that affected our area, as of 9:30 am this morning we have more than 4,700 members without power. This storm has affected the northern part of our service area with the most severe damage in the Waskish, Kelliher, Red Lake and Redby areas.

Crews have been working since the storm hit early this morning and will continue to work until all power is restored. Crews are addressing hazardous and dangerous conditions first and working on restoring power to our large feeder lines to restore power to the largest amount of people and quickly and safely as possible. We appreciate and thank you for your patience while everyone works on restoration efforts.

Check out our outage map here: http://outages.beltramielectric.com:84/#viewer-menu-parent

Beltrami Electric Cooperative

June 29 at 11:11 AM ·

It's important to keep cold food safe during a power outage. First: Keep your refrigerator & freezer doors closed as much as possible to maintain the temperature. If unopened, a refrigerator will keep food safely cold for @ 4 hrs, a full freezer for @ 48 hrs. Dry ice or ice blocks can help keep freezers chilly as well.

We have extensive damage to lines and poles, which mean prolonged outages. That being said, we are hopeful to have as much restored within 24 hours as safely possible.

Stay safe. We appreciate your patience while we work on restoration efforts.

Beltrami Electric Cooperative

June 29 at 6:26 PM ·

Outage Update: As of 6:30 pm, crews are working hard to restore power to the areas hit hard by this storm, with damages far more extensive than we realized this morning. We have lots of broken poles, lines down, trees on lines, and crews are working as quickly and safely as possible. As I took these pictures, I saw some of these guys working in water, with LOTS of Minnesota Mosquitos and very humid temps. They stopped for only a few minutes as we delivered a sandwich, water and Gatorade to keep them hydrated so they could keep working. We will continue to post updates as we hear from the crews on statuses.

Again, we thank members for their patience and we are hoping that the threat of additional storms passes us by this weekend!

Beltrami Electric Cooperative

June 29 at 10:52 PM ·

For safety reasons, we have called in our crews so they can sleep. They will be heading back out early tomorrow morning to continue to work on all remaining outages. They were able to get the largest outages restored by tonight, now we have numerous smaller outages, with dozens of broken poles, downed lines, and lots of trees on the lines. We started the day with nearly 9,500 members out of power and we are down to just over 1,600 members still without power. We appreciate everyone's patience today. This storm has left us with a lot of repairs and cleanup will be extensive.

Please keep an eye on our outage map (http://outages.beltramielectric.com:84/#viewer-menu-parent) and our FB page for updates. As the sole page admin, I am heading home to sleep for awhile as well, and will be back in the morning with updates. Thank you!

Beltrami Electric Cooperative

June 30 at 9:18 AM ·

Crews met this morning to discuss the restoration plan for today. It's all hands on deck for day 2, along with additional help from Roseau Electric Cooperative crews. We have DOZENS of broken poles, downed lines, damaged equipment. These repairs are extensive and will take time. We loaded the guys up with water, Gatorade and BUG SPRAY for today. We appreciate your patience while they work to get all our remaining member's power restored!

Beltrami Electric Cooperative

June 30 at 10:29 AM ·

More poles headed north to replace the dozens that were broken in yesterday's storm. Replacing a pole takes time:

Crews first need to remove wires from broken pole, remove it from area, install cross arm braces if needed and parts to new pole, drill a new hole next to the old one, install new pole, tamp ground, restring line to new pole, then verify everything is safe to energize. I have watched a pole replaced, and it's amazing to see the amount of work that it takes.

Please continue to keep our crews in your thoughts today, that restoration goes well and everyone stays safe!

Thank you to everyone sharing encouraging words! It means a lot to the crews to hear your support and we are sharing all of your comments with them!

Beltrami Electric Cooperative shared a post - feeling heartbroken.

June 30 at 10:53 AM ·

Beltrami Electric Cooperative is mourning the loss of a fellow cooperative employee today. Restoration efforts after these severe storms are so extremely dangerous for the line workers, working long hours, in difficult circumstances, wanting nothing more than to get power back on to their members. We are keeping this line worker's family in our prayers.

Lake Country Power

June 30 at 10:22 AM ·

Lake Country Power is mourning the loss of a co-op employee today. At approximately 6:00 p.m., Friday evening, a co-op line crew was working to restore power when a lineworker collapsed.

The cause of death is not clear and an investigation is underway. An autopsy will be performed to help determine the cause.

The tragic event occurred as LCP line crews responded to more than 7,500 outages after severe thunderstorms that blew through the region early Friday morning. The storm took down trees, power lines and broke dozens of poles near Ely, Orr, Cook, Lake Vermilion, Babbitt, and other areas of the co-op's service area.

Despite the loss of a fellow employee, friend, and co-op family member, crews will continue working today and tomorrow until power is restored for members.

Lake Country Power's primary concern is for the family and co-op employees. In the meantime, the cooperative appreciates everyone's patience and understanding, and privacy for family and employees as they grieve.

Beltrami Electric Cooperative

June 30 at 5:00 PM ·

Storm Outage Update: I just got back from delivering water and Gatorade to the line crews and was able to see the extent of the damage done to the Red Lake area today. There are hundreds of trees downs, resulting in dozens of broken poles, broken line, downed lines. It is a mess. Crews had to start by just clearing trees to even get to our equipment to begin repairs. There were some trees uprooted, some trees twisted around until they snapped off! I really want to thank members for their patience, these guys are working super hard to get these repairs done. Hot, humid temps, lots of bugs and working right in poison ivy. I didn't even want to get too close to take pictures.

Progress is slow going, but they are making headway. I will post more status updates as we are able to assess where we are at. It does look like crews will work until dark tonight then start again tomorrow morning.

Beltrami Electric Cooperative

June 30 at 7:30 PM ·

We are very thankful for the additional manpower and equipment from Roseau Electric Cooperative today! This is what we love about cooperatives, they help each other whenever needed. It is the Cooperative Way. Thank you!!

Beltrami Electric Cooperative

June 30 at 9:44 PM ·

Storm Outage Update: As of 9:30pm tonight, we are down to 18 total outages affecting about 42 member locations. Crews are starting to come in to eat and head home to rest. Crews from Roseau are staying the night and will be here to help crews work on restoring the remaining outages. It was another challenging day, with a few heavy rain showers moving through our area and creating additional difficulties. We appreciate everyone's patience while we have worked through this restoration efforts. We are all crossing our fingers that the weather holds, as gives us a chance to catch up and the guys to rest.

Beltrami Electric Cooperative

July 1 at about 9 PM·

As of tonight, we are down to seven individual outages. Crews worked throughout the day today, including the crews from Roseau Electric Cooperative. These remaining outages require additional electrical work before they can be restored. We would like to thank everyone, our members for their patience and support, our lines crews for working so hard to get power restored safely, our amazing dispatcher for coordinating the restoration effort with our crews, and all the additional support from our amazing employees, from those answering the phones to those who made food and delivered food and water to the crews in the field. Thank you everyone!

 

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