AmerenUE reports it has restored power to nearly all its customers who lost electricity during the first ice storm that hit Missouri Sunday morning. Ameren expects the remaining houses without power in the Jefferson City area to be back on line by the end of the day. Approximately 44,000 customers lost power in the first storm. That total reached 45,000 when the second ice storm hit the state Tuesday morning.
Ameren spokesman Mike Cleary says the weather has cooperated with above freezing temperatures that have allowed the utility to make "great progress". Cleary says Ameren wants any customer without power to call and report their outage. He says houses can sometimes get missed in the rush to restore power and others might have damage at the connection to the house that is preventing power from being restored.
A few hundred Ameren customers in the Excelsior Springs area remain without power. They lost electricity during the second storm.
At the peak of the power outage in Missouri, approximately 170,000 households were without power. Extra crews have been working to restore power to the affected areas. The first ice storm hit southwest Missouri, then skipped to central and northeast Missouri. The second storm hit northern Missouri, striking especially hard in northwest Missouri.
The state says the total number of Missourians without power today is just under 75,000. Aquila of Kansas City reports 36,000 customers remain without power, mostly in St. Joseph and northwest Missouri. That’s down from 66,000 at the peak of the outage left after the second storm hit the state. Kansas City Power and Light, which wasn’t affected much by the storm, has 550 customers still without power. Empire Electric of Joplin says 22,000 customers still have no electricity and the state’s rural electric cooperatives report 15,000 customers without power.
The State Emergency Management Agency now reports that four Missourians have died as a result of the ice storms. A University of Missouri Extension agent slipped on the ice and died of trauma. A Carl Junction man died after being struck by a tree limb. The limb hit his head as he attempted to cut down an ice-damaged tree. Nine SEMA teams have been sent into the field to begin preliminary damage assessment.