Residents who live in the Middle Bay area and beyond are looking at a long, cold week with the power outage that begin early Monday is not expected to be repaired until this weekend at the earliest
Kodiak Electric Association President and CEO Darron Scott said repairs are on a weather hold.
“The only way to get to the site is using a heavy lift helicopter. And that’s the only way to get the equipment there that the helicopter needs to lift about 3000 pounds each. So it’s a special type of helicopter.
We’ve been in contact with the pilot and he is waiting on a weather window to get down here and be able to deliver that type of equipment safely to the site. It’s a very, especially type work. And again, with the location and the weather, we haven’t Kodiak needs a decent window to be able to do that.
“And plus you’ve got the daylight hours issue now as well. So we’re looking at potential this weekend to be able to get that work done.”
WALL: “And do you think it’ll all get done this weekend assuming the Hilo guy gets here, or will they get up there and maybe find there’s something more that needs taking care of and you have to order more parts or something.”
KOZAK: “We’ve been to the site, we’re able to get to with Maritime here and hike to the site. And we’re also using Maritime and fly to the site for a brief period of time and been able to assess it.
“We’ve got the parts list that we need, we’ve got the parts here available, it’s just now getting the equipment there and the poles there to be able to actually build it and do the work. So that’s going to take some time, once we get all that equipment there that shouldn’t be an issue. Hopefully we won’t have further issues complicating, and once we get the poles and everything in there.”
Maritime Helicopters has a hangar at the Kodiak airport.
The power went out when two poles were snapped by high winds at approximately 3:30 a.m. Monday. While KEA doesn’t keep tabs on wind in that area, gusts up to 120 mph were recorded atop Pillar Mountain during that time frame.
The lines run high on the mountainside approximately one mile in from the road. Scott said his crews hiked the area trying to find a way to get equipment up from the road, but there is no way to do so given the rocky area, steep terrain, bogs, and brush along the way.
Earlier this week Scott said it’s highly unusual for KEA to have a long-term power outage like this. He adds that he knows it’s at a very bad time for those affected what with the cold and darkness.
“Again, I just apologize for the inconvenience for the folks that are affected by this. And we know this is a long term outage and it’s just a really unfortunate location of the power poles that that did fail.
“We’re working as fast as we can, just dealing with the weather situation.”
Again, for the folks out the road without power, KEA is waiting for the weather to clear enough to get a specialized heavy lifter helicopter in from Anchorage. Scott says the replacement poles and materials are all ready to go as soon as they get the chance to get to the site.