DENVER (KDVR) – Update 12/31/11: 24: Significant progress was made overnight by the 350 employees and contractors working to restore energy to Boulder customers.
“It has been an incredibly difficult time for many of our communities, and we are working hard to restore electricity and natural gas to customers,” said Alice Jackson, president of Xcel Energy Colorado.
About 80% of affected customer service was restored this morning, with around 15,000 customers remaining.
At the request of city officials, Excel has cut natural gas and electricity services to its customers in Superior and Louisville in an effort to minimize safety concerns that could exacerbate the situation for crews fighting the Marshall fire.
The energy company also offers electric heaters to affected customers in Louisville and Superior. These can be purchased at the Red Cross Hut at the YMCA of Lafayette at 2800 Dagny Way.
About 150 Xcel employees will continue to try to restore natural gas services after assessing the damage. It is estimated that this process will take several days, as restoring natural gas services can only be done by going door-to-door.
“Our hearts are with all those affected by the wildfires, and we are calling for additional hands from across the region and beyond to restore service safely to the extent possible,” Jackson said, “The Conditions continue to be difficult, so we thank customers for their patience as our teams continue to work around the clock.
If customers detect a smell of sulfur or rotten eggs in or near their home, it could be the odor we put in natural gas to help find leaks, and they should leave their home. at once. Do not turn any electrical appliance on or off, use a garage door opener, or use a phone until they are outside, then call us at 1-800- 895-2999. In a life-threatening emergency, dial 911.
In the coming days, Superior and Louisville will continue to be able to find updates on the restoration efforts at xcelenergy.com.
Update: 12.30 / 10.15 p.m .: Xcel Energy said in a press release that they plan to end the blackouts overnight Thursday.
Original story: Despite being hundreds of miles away, the Coloradans who live in the highlands and the San Luis Valley will feel the impact of the Boulder wildfires in their own homes.
According to a press release from Xcel Energy, the wildfires impacted the company’s natural gas infrastructure. To reduce pressure on the system, the company is implementing controlled power outages in Summit, Grand, Lake, Eagle, Saguache, Rio Grande and Alamosa counties until Thursday evening.
No further outages are expected in Mountain Parks Electric’s service area in Grand County, according to the local sheriff’s office.
The outages are expected to last about an hour each. Xcel Energy is asking customers in Summit and Grand counties to conserve natural gas during this period.
At present, Xcel Energy is still evaluating whether it is safe to return to its facilities and restore service to normal.
The company is asking customers in these regions to prepare for controlled outages by turning off electronics and appliances. You can find more energy saving tips here.
Xcel Energy has shut down natural gas services to Superior and Louisville customers to minimize safety concerns.
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