As residents of Mineral County were gearing up for another hot day, they experienced a power outage on Sunday June 28, at 8:15 a.m., as reported by the NV Energy’s website.
“At least 2,463 customers remain without power in Northern Nevada”, was relayed by the taped message as the first hour without electrical power began. With the Accuweather predicting a spiraling heat, with a high 90 degrees that would feel like triple digits, most households were concerned about the elderly and pets. The Buffalo Stop in Walker Lake sent out a message, “Although we are normally closed on Sunday, we are opening to provide a cool spot for anyone that needs it.”
With their generator turned on, the lake’s fire department volunteers also congregated at the Buffalo Stop as a precautionary effort, in case there were any emergencies to deal with.
With no solid details of when the outage would lift, several churches, including the Walker Lake Baptist Church, closed for the morning services to avoid health issues with their congregation sitting in a hot room. Some residents started call-chains to alert their congregations, neighbors and family members that the power outage did not have a definite reset time. Messages came through for those with smart phones, some of which explained the possible problem.
Duane Pittman shared, “I heard a loud electrical noise, like a short or an explosion when it went out.”
Marty Waggoner, who also lives in the same vicinity, reported, “I think it’s the main transformer – I heard a loud buzz then a “Pow” up at the power station. I can see NV Energy trucks up at the transformer, so they responded quickly.”
Reports came in that the outage was as wide spread as Walker Lake, Hawthorne, the Main Base and Luning, which gave the impression that all were on the same power grid. As reported recently by MCIN on May 15, a 6.1 percent decrease in overall electric rates will be taking effect on July 1, but some joked that the decrease came early. For others it was no joke, as they realized that their appliances and coffee makers were at a standstill.
Resident Shani Holley lamented on line by saying, “It’s gonna be a long, hot day.”
Surprisingly enough, the outage began recovery within an hour, but many were still not at full power until after 10 a.m.
In August 2013, NV Energy built a new “truck barn” in Hawthorne, to accommodate company vehicles and expand their inventory with local access to transformers, wire and other materials that would allow a prompt response with large scale repairs.
All these past benefits played into a quick response and allowed everyone to be back up within just a few hours.
At this time, NV Energy has not returned any calls from MCIN regarding the actual cause of the power outage.