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Most power should be back Thursday


October 11, 2017

Havre Daily New staff

The power has not been restored everywhere, but NorthWestern Energy reports its crews are still working on power outages caused by the record-setting snow storm Oct. 2-3, and hopes to have all higher-priority customers back in service by Thursday.

In an update late Tuesday morning, company spokesman Butch Larcombe said NorthWestern still had 220 customers without power. That number included some homes but also included lower-priority hookups such as irrigation pumps and outbuildings including barns as well as corrals, he added.

“We don’t have a good breakdown of how many low-priority customers are part of that 220 number yet,” he added.

Larcombe said the NorthWestern crews were focusing on the Lohman, Chinook, Zurich, Harlem and Savoy areas Tuesday.

“We have about 110 distribution poles that we still need to replace to serve our highest priority customers,” he said.

Larcombe said NorthWestern appreciates the understanding of its customers about their efforts to restore power.

“We have large storm-related outages almost every year in Montana,” he said. “This is the biggest outage we have experienced in more than a decade, both in terms of damage to our electric system and also when measured by how long some of our customers have been without power.”

The storm dumped more than a foot of snow in areas on the plains and up to 30 inches in the Bear Paw Mountains, blocking roads and streets with snow and downed tree branches, and breaking power lines.


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