NORTH MISSISSIPPI (WCBI) – It’s been years since most Mississippians have seen this kind of ice storm. This week ice has managed to close much of the state and, now the weight of the ice has tugged at tree limbs and brought down power lines.
There were some people without power since Monday, but most of the problem came overnight. The ice and snow are melting, but many people in our area are feeling the cold. Electricians are working around the clock to repair lines.
“We’re doing the best we can, it’s just mother nature had other ideas for us last night,” said 4 County Electric Power’s public relations manager Jon Turner.
“We try to stay warm as we can and do the best we can,” said 4 County lineman Eric Yarbrough.
“Nobody realizes just how hard these guys work out there in extreme temperatures whether it’s hot or whether it’s cold,” said 4 County Human Resource Coordinator Becky Canull.
These 4 County employees are pushing themselves to turn the lights back on.
“We’ve got spread out around the service territory we’ve got a lot of small outages so it means once we get one restored guys got to pack up, move and go to the next one so it takes a while to get all that stuff back on,” said Turner.
Turner wants people to know they are working; there are just a couple of bumps in the road.
“The conditions aren’t as bad as they have been, but they’re not great so it takes you to know the ground is saturated its hard to get to someplace, vehicles get stuck sometimes there a lot of things that kind of slow you down in this process,” said Turner.
Lineworkers have their work cut out for them with increased outages throughout the area this week.
“We started out the morning with about 8,000 plus you know it just depends on the terrain and you know of course the conditions are pretty tough I don’t know how many as far as what we’re down to now, but we’re going to work at it as we go,” said Yarbrough.
Linemen are the people you see fixing power lines or poles, but there are people you don’t see who is helping them to help the community.
“We have to prepare snacks for them, drinks for them, we prepare meals for them. We deal with local restaurants to help us get meals together for them to take out and deliver to them because the areas they are in are so remote and of course while we got them in the field we want them to stay in the field because that way they can get the lights back on sooner for our members,” said Canull.
Turner also encourages people to be calm and stay safe.
“Just try to stay warm, and be patient; if there’s a warming shelter or somewhere you can go in the meantime I encourage you to go there. If you have an outage contact us and let us know because we need to know you’re out so we don’t miss you,” said Turner.
Crews are restoring bigger lines first and going down from there to ensure the safety of workers and help the members of 4 County one outage at a time.