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UPDATED: Hydro crews continue work to restore power

A house in Rosemont received extensive damage to the roof after a tree was uprooted following Wednesday's massive windstorm. — Submitted photo

Nelson Hydro has brought in crews from MarTech, Summerland and Penticton to assist city workers to restore power to the many customers affected by Wednesday’s windstorm.

The windstorm, which caused considerable damage in the Southern Interior of BC Wednesday morning, saw more than 4000 customers to lose power.

“The City of Nelson and Nelson Hydro would like to thank our residents and customers for their continued patience as our team works to restore power to the area,” a City of Nelson media release said.

“After the initial storm, there were over 4000 customers without power. After 24 hours, this number has been reduced to 2400 customers, with the majority of these customers being on the North Shore.”

FortisBC continues to restore power to customers in Pass Creek, Shoreacres, Kaslo and Creston areas.

Nelson Hydro appreciates this is a difficult time for many and promises to work hard to get power restored.

“We are grateful for the calm and sunny weather today for our crews to work,” the City of Nelson said.

“We also appreciate the positive feedback we are receiving from the community during this challenging time.”

Nelson Hydro is asking the public of any of friends, neighbours or family who may be experiencing a prolonged outage, to do a wellness call to ensure everything is okay.

Nelson Hydro advises the public that grocery stores, gas stations and other retailers are all open for business in Nelson. #nelsontogether

Operational Update:

Nelson Hydro said the current focus is on the major storm damage to the primary feeders on the North Shore.

However, Nelson Hydro does have a crew addressing the dozens of isolated issues within the city and South Shore service areas.

Restoration timeline for main feeders:

  • Sundance Road and Redfish Creek area, Penticton and Summerland Crews are currently working on the restoration of power. Estimated completion, Thursday, January 14, by end of day
  • East of Redfish Creek to Balfour, Nelson Hydro crew is currently working on the restoration of power. Estimated completion, Friday, January 15, by end of day
  • Queens Bay to Coffee Creek, Martech crews are currently working on the restoration of power. Estimated completion, Friday, January 15, end of the day.
  • Marello Road and 49 Creek area, a Nelson Hydro crew is working on the restoration of power. Estimated completion, Thursday, January 14 (Within the hour)
  • Harrop Procter, Thursday, January 14, (by end of day)
  • Marsden Road, Thursday, January 14 (afternoon)
  • Mountain Station, Saturday, January 16.

Nelson Hydro said each area has an additional Traffic Control crew and a Vegetation Certified Utility Arborist crew with them to allow work along the highway.

Nelson Hydro asks that the public reports any downed trees and power lines and to be respectful of downed power lines and maintain limits of approach — do not go within 10 metres of a downed line.

IMPORTANT SAFETY MESSAGE:

For those who can remain at home:

  1. Do not use barbeques, camp stoves, kerosene heaters, or other carbon monoxide-producing devices indoors
  2. Use flashlights instead of candles to prevent fires
  3. Make sure you have battery-operated smoke and CO alarms

A downed tree in the 800 block of Stanley Street in Nelson was just one of the casualties from the massive windstorm Wednesday morning. — The Nelson Daily photo

UPDATED: Nelson Hydro releases outage restoration dates/times

Nelson Hydro released a timeline Wednesday evening of when power can be expected to be restore in outage areas due to the recent windstorm.

Most recent restoration dates/times:

  • Nelson to Sundance Road, Wednesday January 13, before 9:00pm.
  • Perrier Road Hwy 6, Wednesday January 13, before 9:00pm.
  • Marsden Road, Thursday, January 14.
  • Sundance to Redfish, Thursday, January 14th, before 6:00pm
  • Harrop Procter, Thursday, January 14, by end of day.
  • East of Redfish Creek to Balfour, Saturday, January 16.
  • Mountain Station, Saturday, January 16.
  • Balfour to Coffee Creek, Sunday, January 17.

Nelson Hydro would like to thank residents and customers for their continued patience as our crews work tirelessly to remove fallen trees and debris that continue to impact our utility infrastructure.

Nelson Hydro said the damage done to our system is unprecedented, but that is not deterring us from working to restore power to every customer as quickly, and safely as we can. In some cases, this may take a day or two, but rest assured, we are on the job.

Nelson Hydro has secured additional crews, including linemen and equipment from the Okanagan.

If you know someone who may potentially have a longer outage, we ask that you do a wellness call to ensure your friends, family and neighbours are doing okay.

For continued updates this evening or to report a downed line (not listed below), please call the 24 hr Nelson Hydro Outage Line at 1-877-324-9376.

Windstorm rocks BC Southern Interior, West Kootenay 

Wow, what just happened.

The BC Southern Interior, including the West Kootenay, woke up to a huge windstorm that rode in from the west Wednesday morning.

The storm packed huge winds that knocked down ancient old trees, including the tall tree in the yard in the 800 block of Stanley Street next to the Kootenay Lake School Board Offices in the old Central School building.

The tree blocked the entire street with the tip narrowly missing the fence of the playground at the Board Office.

On the North Shore, where power was knocked out due to trees falling across power lines, commuter traffic, including Nelson Transit, was delayed as motorists waited for crews to clear debris from the highway.

Traffic was halted at Four Mile for more than an hour as crews worked diligently to remove trees.

Nelson Hydro and FortisBC crews were also dispatched to deal with power outages throughout the North Shore and West Kootenay.

The 800 Block of Stanley Street was closed to traffic Wednesday morning as City of Nelson Public Works crews cleared a fallen tree. — The Nelson Daily photo

The FortisBC outage map lists troubled areas caused by the windstorm in the Southern Interior of BC. — Image courtesy FortisBC