Awaking to a city-wide power outage Saturday morning made many of us modify our usual routines — going without coffee, delaying a shower, skipping a trip to the store or opening the garage door …
Awaking to a city-wide power outage Saturday morning made many of us modify our usual routines — going without coffee, delaying a shower, skipping a trip to the store or opening the garage door manually. But while most residents experienced minor inconveniences, first responders and City of Powell crews had to deal with much more, as a fire broke out at the city’s Vining Substation.
The fire “created power issues of magnitudes that the City of Powell has never experienced before” and crippled the substation, said City Administrator Zack Thorington.
Thankfully, no one was injured in the fire, and the outages — though they may have felt long at times — were temporary.
The power outages also brought to light the things we often take for granted. When you try to flip on a light switch or coffee pot during an outage, it makes you more thankful for the thousands of times it turns on instantly.
We’re also grateful for City of Powell crews and others who worked long hours over the weekend to ensure that electricity was restored. In a Facebook comment that drew nearly 600 reactions, Donny Mills of Powell noted that it’s in our nature to be more cynical than optimistic when voicing opinions, and commended the city for getting power restored to the town.
Workers gave up their weekend plans — trips to the mountains, birthday parties, time with family — to ensure that Powell residents had electricity by Saturday night.
Sure, we realize the outages also forced residents to change their weekend plans or came at inconvenient times, such as while making dinner or during a movie at the theater. But behind the scenes, people ranging from city crews to Garland Light and Power to the Western Area Power Administration were working hard to make those blackouts as short as possible.
Once again, we’re also reminded how fortunate the Powell community is to have emergency crews who are always standing by and ready to race to the scene of a fire, no matter the day or hour. From the dispatcher who takes an initial call to the last fireman who leaves the scene, we can never give too many thank yous to the first responders who faithfully serve and even risk their own lives.
Unfortunately, the weekend continued to be busy for local first responders, as they were called out to other emergencies, including motor vehicle crashes and a baler fire. That’s the reality of being a fireman, EMT, police officer or dispatcher — they must always be ready for the next call. With the Fourth of July this week, those calls may become more frequent. The Fourth is often a busy time for volunteer firemen who are called away from their own celebrations to put out flames sparked by fireworks. While we hope those blazes can be avoided this year by revelers taking the proper precautions, we appreciate those who are so quick to offer assistance — whether it’s an early Saturday morning, a late holiday night or any time in between.