BARC Electric Cooperative is assessing the widespread damage caused by the winter storm that struck the territory overnight. It is estimated that approximately 6,300 customers (50% of BARC’s customers) are without electric service. Most of the outages are caused by heavy snow accumulation causing trees and tree branches to collapse on the electric system.
Customers are reminded to stay clear of downed or sagging wires. As fallen wires may be hidden by trees, snow or debris, extreme caution should be used when moving through an outage zone. Fallen wires can still be energized and dangerous. If a power line falls on a vehicle, occupants should stay inside and wait for rescue crews.
Customers without power are encouraged to report their outages by calling (800) 846-2272. Outages reported via the automated system or to a live operator will result in a printed outage ticket in BARC’s emergency operations center. BARC dispatchers will be logging and dispatching crews, focusing first on restoring the transmission system and three-phase circuits to restore power to as many customers as possible in the shortest period of time.
Restoration efforts will be hampered by road and weather conditions, and it will likely be several days before power can be restored to all customers. Customers should consider making alternate arrangements to stay elsewhere if needed.