Widespread Arctic blast is blamed for power outages

WAUSA — Knox and Cedar County residents endured rolling power outages early this week.

The electricity in several area communities went out for approximately 30 mimutes throughout the morning Tuesday.

The outages took place shortly after the Southwest Power Pool declared an Energy Emergency Alert (EEA) Level 3 effective for the entire 14-state authority area.

Planned power outages also hit several other Cedar and Knox County communities during the day.

NPPD CEO Tom Kent gave a virtual news conference Tuesday morning to address the issue.

The planned outages took place because systemwide generating capacity dropped below current load of approximately 42 gigawatts (GW) due to extremely low temperatures and inadequate supplies of natural gas.

“We’ll be working with our member utilities to implement controlled interruptions of electric service throughout our region. This is done as a last resort to preserve the reliability of the electric system as a whole,” NPPD officials said through an email Tuesday morning.

NPPD officials said Individuals in the SPP service territory should take steps to conserve energy use and follow their local utilities’ instructions regarding conservation, local conditions and the potential for outages to their homes and businesses.

SPP officials said they were forecasting a morning peak of above 44.6 GW around 9 a.m.

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