As a storm rolled into Jefferson County Tuesday, crews from Fairbury Light and Water were dispatched throughout the county, working late into the night to restore power.
Jim Morehead, Electric Line Superintendent for Fairbury, explained that the high winds and wicked lightning knocked out power in parts of the county for up to two hours.
“We’re getting caught up now,” said Morehead. “We had the whole line crew out working on Tuesday night. Two major switches were down: one was caused by a large tree being down on the lines near Harbine, and the brick-yard line, which was down for about an hour and a half. We had Fairbury east to Jansen back on in about an hour, then another took about an hour and a half before we could find it and get it back online.”
Morehead stated that a majority of the crews were out until 1 a.m.; however, there was one group that worked until 3 a.m. Areas affected by the outages included Harbine, Endicott, Jansen, Thompson and Gladstone. Morehead believes that the high winds on Tuesday also played a factor, noting that the outage near Gladstone was caused by downed limbs being blown into the lines.
“A guy had cut some limbs down by Gladstone, so we had to go out there,” Morehead said. “We must’ve had some real strong winds over that way, because those limbs were in the lines, and it knocked the power out near Gladstone for about two hours.”
Morehead believes that everything went well for crews, noting that no one was injured. He believes that dispatch did a great job handling the high volume of calls about power outages, and commended them for their work.
Even if lines are down, they can still carry an electric charge, Morehead emphasized, which is why people need to stay safe around those lines and call Fairbury Light and Water. He advises people to stay cautious during storms and to be on the lookout for downed power lines.