Power outages remain in western Kansas


WICHITA COUNTY, Kan. (KSNW) — Dozens of crews have been working around the clock, restoring power to people throughout western Kansas.

Right after that snow storm, thousands lost electricity.

Prairieland Electric reports they have 362 meters still down. Midwest Energy still has 109 customers without power.

Wheatland Electric reports they have 295 meters down, but only 18 residential properties are without power.

All eighteen are in Wichita County, but residents still have a few more days to wait.

“We’re very optimistic that Saturday is going to be that day,” said Shawn Powelson with Wheatland Electric. “That’s what everyone is shooting for. Hopefully even sooner than that, but Saturday is the day we all have marked on our calendars.”

Crews have been working for 12 days straight to repair posts that were knocked down in the storm.

“Obviously the wind and the snow, combination of those things,” said Powelson. “It was blizzard-like conditions on that Sunday.”

That has meant non-stop work for the linemen.

“We have linemen who have been working outages since Saturday morning, actually, so we’re on day 12,” said Powelson. “We have linemen that have worked every day for all twelve of those days.”

Mutual aid crews have been assisting Wheatland Electric with repairs. They’ve recently been tackling longer stretches of downed lines and reaching fewer people.

“This is our second long stretch,” said Ben Ruthstron, a lineman with Rolling Hills Electric. “We’ve got probably three to four miles in so far last two days.”

Several crews spent the entire day on Wednesday restoring power to just one house.

“Well, it’s just kind of like where I’m from,” said Ruthstron. “We got a lot of miles that don’t go to much, so you do what you can to get them on.”

Out of those 18 residences without power, only five are being lived in. They should have the lights back on by later tonight.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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