PEORIA — Several outages across central Illinois have crews from Ameren Illinois working in the cold and the ice to restore power.
To that end, the utility announced it activated its "Emergency Operations Center (EOC)" in the Galesburg, LaSalle, and Peoria metro areas.
As of 9:30 p.m., the company reports that 102 wires, 37 distribution poles, 30 sub transmission poles are downed. More than 350 resources are actively engaged in restoration, with additional 275 contract workers being called in from nearby utilities and neighboring states.
"Damage caused by ice and wind is particularly challenging to repair," said Ron Pate, Ameren Illinois Senior Vice President, Operations and Technical Services. "As downed lines are put back up, they can re-freeze and high winds can bring them right back down again."
Ice and blustery winds have combined to create situations that lead to trees limbs cracking and severing power lines. Ice accumulating on the power lines can also cause damage to the electrical grid, the utility said in a news release.
So far, the outages are fairly scattered across central Illinois but don't involve a high number of customers. One in Peoria has six customers without power. One near Hopedale has three people without power. Across the river, in Washington, there's a report of 14 outages.
"Additional electric crews and vegetation personnel have been deployed to each region, along with portable storm trailers and extra materials. The EOC will be staffed around the clock to coordinate service restoration, logistical support and communications," the release said.
If someone loses power, Ameren says to call (800) 755-500. One can check the online outage map, https://outagemap.ameren.com, or go to the company's Twitter feed or Facebook page.