The Association of Missouri Electric Cooperatives says the “bulls-eye” for the ice storm appears to be heading to western Missouri’s Butler, south of Kansas City.
Association vice president Jim McCarty says Butler is the headquarters for Osage Valley Electric Cooperative.
“They’re expecting about three quarters of an inch of ice there,” says McCarty. “Surrounding areas look slightly less, maybe up to that amount.”
McCarty says the electric cooperatives along the I-44 corridor and mid-Missouri can expect a half-inch to three-quarters of an inch of ice.
McCarty warns the ice storm is coming in waves, and says outages will likely continue into Saturday.
He says northern Missouri likely won’t see problems from the ice storm until Sunday, with temperatures not warming up above freezing on Monday.
“Their (northern Missouri) ice levels are going to be quite a bit less, but their critical period is probably going to be Sunday and the weather will warm up later there, so we’ll probably see ice on the ground and on the trees until Monday.”
McCarty tells Missourinet that Friday’s power outages followed the I-44 corridor.
Meantime, linemen from southern states battered by hurricanes are ready to head to Missouri to assist during and after the ice storm. McCarty says his organization had a conference call with other states.
“We sent crews down into Mississippi and Louisiana when the hurricanes hit there. I suspect there are linemen down in Louisiana and Mississippi who have their trucks pointed north right now, and would love to come up and give us a hand,” says McCarty.
McCarty says Missouri’s electric cooperatives have been tracking the storm for a week and are prepared to deal with its aftermath.
All 40 of Missouri’s electric cooperatives have enacted their emergency response plans. Together, those 40 cooperatives have about 600,000 members statewide.
Electric cooperatives are privately-owned businesses established to supply electricity to their member-owners. They are owned by their customers, the people who use the power provided by the cooperatives.