More than 2,600 Caney Fork Electric customers were without electricity during the latter part of the Christmas holiday when high winds reeked havoc on the lines. Fortunately for McMinnville residents no outages were reported, according to McMinnville Electric System CEO and General Manager Rodney Boyd.
“The majority of our problems started at about 10 p.m. on Christmas day night,” said Teresa Parker, operations coordinator for Caney Fork Electric. “The wind was pretty harsh throughout the night and caused periodic outages in different areas throughout the county. Not everyone was affected at the same time.”
According to company records, high wind gusts took down one pole on Mt. Zion Road and winds caused a tree limb to fall in the Short Mountain Road area, both taking down the lines and causing electricity outages to hundreds of customers.
“We had one pole down and one limb fall on the lines,” said Parker. “Most of our problems were with just high winds knocking down the lines. We had several areas without power throughout the night and into the next morning.”
Along with Mt. Zion and Short Mountain Road, customers in and around Harrison Ferry Mountain, Rock Island, Irving College and Yager Road also felt the sting of being temporarily without power.
It is estimated 2,600 customers were affected by the outages in the 12-hour period and crews worked throughout the night to restore electricity as situations developed.
“We want to apologize to our customers,” said Parker. “We just hope everyone understands that we cannot control the weather. When problems arise, we just try to do the best we can. Our guys worked throughout the night and into the morning to restore the power.”
Lineman George Newman was among the crew members out in the cold, wind and rain restoring power.
“It was pretty cold,” said Newman. “It would stop raining and the stars would shine. Then, it would start raining again. We were out all night starting at 10:30. We were still going at 7:30 the next morning. I didn’t get any sleep.”
Electricity was restored to all the company’s customers by approximately 10 a.m. on Dec. 26.