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Frost, wind cause power outage

A power outage and interruptions in electrical service over the weekend is being blamed on a build-up of frost on power lines and gusting winds.

Nearly 2,000 customers of Runestone Electric Association from parts of four counties — Douglas, Grant, Stevens and Pope — were without power for a portion of Sunday evening. While the duration of the outage varied, REA's Sue Lundeen said most outages lasted approximately two hours. The area of Douglas County affected was primarily west and southwest of Alexandria.

Lundeen, manager of member services for REA, said that some people in those same locations may have noticed blinking lights beginning Saturday night, when power was also interrupted occasionally.

The issues were caused by a build-up of frost on power lines that created weight on the lines, REA said in a statement.

"The wind caused power lines to gallop, slapping lines together, creating instant faults, resulting in blinking lights," reads the statement. "Unfortunately, there is nothing electric companies could do until the frost blew off the power lines."

Line crews from REA were in the field Monday conducting patrols of the power lines, inspecting for damage that may have been caused by the lines whipping around.

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