NorthWestern Energy responds to 300 downed power lines statewide during winter storm

Posted at 6:50 PM, Sep 30, 2019
and last updated 2019-09-30 23:21:09-04

BUTTE - This weekend’s blast of winter weather resulted in more than 300 reports of power lines going down across western Montana.

Officials with Northwestern Energy said they were ready.

“We’re prepared for this, watching the weather forecast and making sure when things go bad were ready to respond,” said NorthWestern Energy Community Relations Director Paul Babb.

And respond they did after heavy snow and wind caused downed power lines and outages in mainly the northern part of the state. This required pooling the company’s manpower.

“The weekend before we had about 400 man hours that were out there working and this weekend there was about 1,700. So, we did pull in crews from other areas to make sure to keep things safe and make sure we get people back in power,” said Babb.

Northwestern Energy encourages any help from the public.

“If you do see any power lines that are down, that you do report those immediately and stay away from them,” said Babb.

And with these cooler temperatures coming in, people are going to be firing up the boilers and also their heaters, so NorthWestern wants their customers to be wary of any gas leaks and to contact them as soon as possible.

“We want to make sure if you’re turning your boiler back on, number one, if you smell gas that you make sure that you take the precautions to get out of the house and that you call and report that so we can take care of that in a safe manner,” said Babb.

NorthWestern customers can report a problem by calling the emergency line at (888) 467-2669.