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UPDATED: More than 200,000 without power in region

Post by Stacey Mulick / The News Tribune on Jan. 19, 2012 at 6:40 am |
January 19, 2012 4:02 pm

UPDATED at 4:06 p.m.

Tacoma Power is reporting another outage in the Frederickson area that is affecting 1,830 customers. Crews on their way.

UPDATED at 1:49 p.m.

Hundreds of thousands of people throughout the Puget Sound region are without power today because of downed trees and power lines from this week’s double winter blast of snow and ice.

Puget Sound Energy reports that 200,000 people are without power in the region. Pierce County reports that more than 75,000 people throughout the county are in the dark this morning.

Puget Sound Energy warns that they might not be able to restore power to the hardest hit areas until Saturday or beyond. Customers are without power in Pierce, Thurston and south King counties, spokesman Roger Thompson said.

More outages are being reported as ice-weakened tress continue to crash to the ground, taking power lines with them, Thompson said.

“Right now, it’s more of a question of where there’s not damage,” he said. “Until the trees stop falling, it’s pretty hard to put an end date on it. It’s easy to see we’re into Saturday now, but it could go beyond that.”

PSE is calling in crews from California, Utah and Canada to augment nearly 100 crews already working in the region, Thompson said.

“It’s just a huge challenge right now,” he said.

Tacoma Public Utilities is asking residents in Graham, Frederickson, Spanaway and Roy to unplug their appliances and other electrical items and to turn down the heat.

“If there is too much of a demand when we turn the power back on, it can cause it to immediately go out again,” the utility reports.

Among the outages:

* Peninsula Light Co. reports that 740 customers are without power in the Slyvia Lake area of Artondale.

* 2,249 Tacoma Public Utilities customers are without power in Tacoma and University Place from 70th Avenue West to Day Island and 31st Street West to 21st Street West.

* 600 TPU customers in the South End, from Yakima Avenue to Sprague Avenue and South 97th to South 112th Street.

* More than 2,000 Tacoma Power customers east Pierce County are still without power again today after the same transmission line that went out Wednesday night went down again. Originally more than 24,000 people were impacted.

* About 640 Tacoma Public Utilities customers in Browns Point are without power.

* About 2,600 Tacoma Public Utilities customers have no power in Tacoma from 51st Street West to 40th Street West, 67th Avenue West to Orchard Street, and 67th Avenue West from 35th Street West to Chambers Creek Road West.

* Puget Sound Energy reports there are 515 outage locations impacting 184,000 customers in Pierce, King and Thurston counties are among the hardest hit areas.

* Peninsula Light Co. reports 237 are without power.

* Power is out throughout downtown Puyallup, University Place, in Fircrest and South Hill.

Staff writer Adam Lynn contributed to this report.

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