Golden Valley Electric Association power outage update
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (KTVF) - Golden Valley Electric Association (GVEA) had hoped to have most outages restored by Thursday. With the latest storm dumping another 12 inches of snow in the Interior, on top of what has already accumulated, new outages were added to the outage list and the Thursday time schedule was not possible.
“As many as 1,200 people were still without power on Wednesday afternoon.” said Golden Valley Senior Engineer Nathan Minnema.
As of Wednesday evening, more than 800 Golden Valley customers were still experiencing power outages in the Fairbanks, North Pole, Chena Hot Springs, Salcha, Harding Lake, Eielson Air Force Base, and Nenana, and Healy areas.
Director of Member Services Abby Dillard said that linemen had been able to restore power to nearly 4,000 people who suffered outages on Christmas Day before more precipitation caused trees to fall on power lines and damage poles. According to GVEA, 15,000 members were without power at one point on Sunday, December 26.
The new goal is to have the majority of outages restored by late Friday.
Over 10 linemen crews have arrived from Anchorage to assist in repairing the power lines.
“They brought their own trucks and snow machines in some cases so they have their own equipment and then we are expecting two to three more crews from Anchorage later this evening.” Minnema said. “Our crews are traveling and often times leaving their home and family, often times out of power to come in and clock some ridiculous hours here trying to track down outages and get the power restored as fast as possible. So yeah, we’ve got some of the best folks around guaranteed.”
Minnema explained how the conditions have been slowing down progress in the rural areas. “That was just an increased challenge. We have the glaze over the top of the snow. The line crews said they were having a hard time even with the snow machines because they were breaking through an inch to two inch crust of frozen snow on the top where the rain had locked that in, so the snow machines were fighting that.”
GVEA warns everyone to stay away from downed lines because they still pose a danger to the surrounding area.
If you see a downed line or know of an outage, call 907-452-1151. The Outage Viewer Map is a great resource displaying current outages in our service areas. The page updates automatically every 3 minutes.
GVEA is working to resolve all outages as quickly and effectively as possible.
As of 9:30 a.m. Thursday, December 30, there are 395 customers without power.
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