A powerline covered in snow is seen along Murwood Avenue in Soldotna, Alaska, on Wednesday, Nov. 15, 2023. (Jake Dye/Peninsula Clarion)

A powerline covered in snow is seen along Murwood Avenue in Soldotna, Alaska, on Wednesday, Nov. 15, 2023. (Jake Dye/Peninsula Clarion)

Windstorm causes 2 large power outages

The storm was the result of a strong low pressure system moving up from the North Pacific

A windstorm caused multiple large power outages across the central peninsula Sunday and Monday, but Homer Electric Association says all service was restored by Monday afternoon.

The first outage occurred shortly after 2 p.m. on Sunday, when Homer Electric wrote “we are aware of a large outage in Soldotna.” By 4 p.m., they wrote that around 4,100 members had been affected, along K-Beach, Kenai, Soldotna and Nikiski.

Many of those members without power saw service restored by 7 p.m., the cooperative crediting “huge strides” that restored power to over 3,700. The remaining 400 members were affected by smaller outages, mostly caused by “trees outside the right-of-way.” Full service was restored around 2 a.m.

A second large outage affected around 2,700 members around 3 p.m. on Monday, caused by “several trees” downed on a line near Mackey Lake Road.

The storm was the result of a strong low pressure system moving up from the North Pacific, according to forecast information from the National Weather Service on Saturday. They wrote that “strong winds, heavy snow and whiteout conditions” could be seen in the region Sunday through Monday morning.

On Monday, the service wrote that a winter storm “remains in progress.” An avalanche warning had been issued for much of the eastern Kenai Peninsula, including Girdwood, Portage Valley, the Turnagain Pass, Moose Pass and Seward by the Chugach National Forest Avalanche Center through Monday evening because of “several feet of snow” expected to continue falling that day.

The weather service forecast a chance of snow and showers through Wednesday, when things were expected to clear up briefly before snow returns Friday.

For more information about Homer Electric Association and their efforts during power outages, find them on Facebook at “Homer Electric Association.”

Reach reporter Jake Dye at jacob.dye@peninsulaclarion.com.

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