Ice and strong winds are combining to knock out the power to hundreds of homes and businesses in northern Iowa. Alliant Energy spokesman Justin Foss says there were some 1,500 customers in the Mason City area in the dark as of 10:30 this morning.

He says the wind picked up and ice on power lines and trees brought down plenty of both. Foss says the utility has teams of workers on duty trying to get the power restored as quickly as they can. He says their crews, as well as contract crews from out of state, are trying to repair the lines since weather conditions aren’t bad enough to warrant stopping work.

Foss says if your power is off, never assume the company knows about the outage. He says calls into their customer service center helps let them know how widespread the outage is and possibly speed up determining the cause of the outage.

For more information or to look at the current outage statistics, look on Alliant’s website at ““.

By Bob Fisher, KRIB, Mason City