Columbus, Neb. – Power was restored Saturday evening in Kearney after Nebraska Public Power District transmission and distribution crews completed their final storm restoration work. This effort returned service to the last 23 customers without power in the East Industrial Park.
Strong thunderstorms with winds in excess of 75 miles per hour hit the Kearney area early Tuesday morning, April 9, leaving approximately 1,700 customers throughout the community without electricity. Most customers in Kearney were restored within 48 hours, but the hardest hit area, the East Industrial Park, suffered extensive damage that required replacing approximately 40 poles broken off when the high winds passed through area.
“Our crews worked to get as many residential and commercial customers back in service as quickly and safely as possible,” said NPPD Chief Operating Officer Tom Kent. “We appreciate the cooperation of our all customers, who were patient as our crews worked to restore service. Our thanks also go to the City of Kearney for its support during the restoration work.”
NPPD brought in more than 50 line technicians from other NPPD locations across the state to help local crews repair the damage.
“The response of our line crews to storm damage like we saw in Kearney and other areas across the state goes beyond expectations,” Kent said. “Just hours after the storm and assessment of the damages and material needs, crews were loading up equipment and heading to Kearney.” The crews worked 16 hours a day until power was restored.
Besides the crews located in Kearney, NPPD also received support from operations in South Sioux City, Norfolk, Hartington, Creighton, Bloomfield, York, Milford, McCook, Oshkosh, and Lexington.
A planned outage along Avenue M was required on Sunday to complete the restoration effort. NPPD will have crews in the area most of this week removing the remaining debris. Those traveling through the affected areas should use caution around the work crews.