More than 4,000 Alliant Energy customers in northern Iowa and southern Minnesota were still without power this morning, following the blast from the blizzard. Wind gusts up to 60 miles-an-hour sheered off tree limbs which took out utility lines in dozens of locations.
Alliant spokesman Justin Foss says more than 900 customers are in the dark in Cerro Gordo County alone. “The crews were able to get out once the sun came up this morning,” Foss says. “We’re finding they’re able to get to some of these locations, especially in the rural areas around north Iowa, but we’re also still finding many of the roads are still impassible.”
Parts of Hancock County report more than ten inches of snow from this storm and while plows have been working round-the-clock, some roads are being drifted over minutes after plows have gone by. Foss says, “Crews are working on the outages that they can get to but we realize that until the road conditions get cleaned up and some of the other weather subsides, we know some customers are going to be without power until late this afternoon.”
In the midst of the wintry mess, he says there is some good news. “We do expect that we can get everybody back on today,” Foss says. “We’re bringing in extra crews to help make that happen, but what a lot of it is going to depend on is how soon the road conditions clear up and how they stay throughout the day.”
If you see a downed power line, don’t touch it and call it in right away at 800-ALLIANT.
(Reporting by Jesse Stewart, KRIB, Mason City)