Snow, intertie failure cause power outages for thousands

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FAIRBANKS, Alaska - This morning at 11-15, Golden Valley Electric Association was buying power over what's called 'the intertie' from Anchorage when the connection went down somewhere in the Wasilla area.
Public Relations Officer with G-V-E-A, Corinne (Core-een) Bradish, compared it to an extension cord that somehow got unplugged.
Within 30 minutes the electric company was able to stabilize its generators and get power back online.
Back on Sunday afternoon, residents began to lose power, but for a different reason.
A snow storm in January, followed by the recent warming temperatures, weighed down tree branches that began hanging on power lines.
Even before outages started on Sunday, line crews have been out trimming trees.
With six to 10 crews out every day for 24 hours at a time, Bradish says it will still take a few months for trees to be fully cleared.
She went on to say that residents should stay away from trees hanging near the lines.

Corinne Bradish; Public Relations Officer, GVEA >> "Number one is, members should not be trying to remove a tree from a power line because it could be energized meaning the power in the power line could be touching the tree and going down the tree so we do not want members to be touching trees and power lines. They can report those to us because we do want to know that. Today, probably by tonight we will have on our web page a banner up there with a form that members can go to that, fill it out with the location, they can even attach pictures and that will help us know where the bad places are, where we've got a lot of trees in the power lines. We know of some of them but normally neighborhoods and people in those neighborhoods know even more."