The Commercial-News, Danville, IL

Local News

December 21, 2012

Storm causes outages, crashes

DANVILLE — Power was expected to be restored to local customers of Ameren Illinois by Friday night. As of early afternoon, 107 customers were without power in the Danville area.

Leigh Morris with Ameren’s public affairs offices said 918 customers in the Danville area didn’t have power at the height of the outages Thursday night.

“We’ll have everybody on line this evening,” he said Friday.

The outages were caused by broken utility poles and downed wires during a winter storm Thursday night. It’s time-consuming and intensive to replace a pole, Morris said, because crews need to locate underground lines before digging the hole.

Across Ameren’s service area, outages peaked at 40,521 customers at 6:50 p.m. Thursday. By noon Friday, about 6,800 customers were still without power.

A major cause of the power outages has been a phenomenon known as “galloping conductors.” Galloping conductors can occur when strong winds blow across power lines, causing the lines to move up and down in a violent manner. This movement is known as “galloping,” which often results in damage to cross arms on poles, insulators and even the wires, causing power outages.

Slick roads

The icy roads contributed to a handful of accidents Thursday night.

Just before 11 p.m., a truck driven by Adam C. Smalley, 27, of Attica, Ind., lost control in the 800 block of Lynch Spur. The vehicle slid off the road, went into a ditch and overturned. Smalley and a passenger were treated at the scene by Lynch volunteer fire and rescue workers.

At 11:46 p.m. Thursday, a southbound car driven by Marjorie French, 31, of Danville, lost control on the ice on Memorial Bridge on Gilbert Street. Her car skidded into the northbound lane and hit a car driven by Bryan Jenkins, 18, of Westville. Both vehicles skidded and hit the bridge’s east curb.

There were no injuries or tickets issued.

FYI

To report downed wires or other problems, customers should call Ameren Illinois at (800) 755-5000. Outage and safety information is available at http://www.illinoisoutage.com

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