It’s only Wednesday but it’s already been a busy week for Chelan County PUD crews who have been dealing with several power outages throughout the county the past two days.
The latest three outages were this morning and knocked power out for 670 customers on the north shore of Lake Wenatchee, 234 customers on the south shore of Lake Wenatchee and 450 customers up the Entiat River Road.
It took less than two hours to get most of the power restored on the north shore of Lake Wenatchee after the 6 a.m. outage.
The PUD said about 20 customers on Brown Road remain without power but it is expected to be back on by 1 p.m.
Crews expect to have power back on early this afternoon on the south shore after a 10:44 outage caused by a tree that broke over a line, the PUD said. That outage is around Cedar Brae Road,
A fallen tree and wind-related damage is suspected in the 5 a.m. outage up the Entiat River Road from mile 7.5 to the end of the line.
Power was restored at 10:07 a.m.
Tuesday night, falling trees led to outages for 278 PUD customers from Coles Corner west of Leavenworth to White Pines Road. That outage was about an hour from about 8:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m.
Rachel Hansen, senior communications strategist with the PUD, said such outages are not uncommon for this time of year.
“Right now, warmer-than-average temperatures have loosened the recently-saturated soil. Combined with high winds, the result is falling trees,” Hansen said.
Tuesday morning, there was a brief power outage in parts of Wenatchee that was caused by a squirrel.
Power was out in the area from Red Apple Road to Washington Street and Lambert Street to Okanogan Avenue.
“The squirrel-related outage yesterday is part of an ongoing issue in this particular neighborhood,” Hansen said. “It appears the squirrel population has boomed there, which has led to a series of outages throughout late summer and fall. Squirrels sometimes use our powerlines as a transportation corridor, especially if there are tall shrubs or trees near the line.”
She said the PUD is planning to install more animal guards and other protective measures and residents can help by planting the right trees away from power lines.