PLATTSMOUTH – A large tree caused more than 1,000 Plattsmouth customers to lose power on Friday when it collapsed onto electrical distribution lines.
Nebraska Public Power District (NPPD) crews responded to the intersection of North 20th Street and Avenue B early Friday afternoon. They discovered a large tree had been in a front yard of a home. Gusty winds uprooted the tree and caused it to fall across the street.
Mark Becker, supervisor of corporate media and media services for NPPD, said the tree fell on distribution lines that carry electricity to homes and businesses. He said Plattsmouth city crews responded to the scene as well and provided a large amount of help for the cleanup and electrical restoration work.
“We typically deal with outages involving tree branches, but this was a very large tree so it took some time to remove it before we could start the restoration process,” Becker said. “The assistance of the Plattsmouth city crews was extremely helpful.”
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Becker said 1,133 customers in Plattsmouth lost power when the tree fell on the distribution lines at 1:54 p.m. This included many businesses along Highway 75. Law enforcement employees directed traffic at the intersection of Highway 75 and Avenue B due to the loss of electricity for traffic lights there.
NPPD employees who are based in Plattsmouth joined forces with Plattsmouth city crews at the scene. They were able to safely remove the tree from the location. There were many branches and leaves that were either on or nearby the power lines.
NPPD crews then began to conduct repair work on the distribution lines and power poles. An initial group of customers had power restored by 2:30 p.m. All NPPD customers had their electricity up and running again by 5:03 p.m.
Wind gusts in Plattsmouth reached 37 miles per hour when the tree fell at 1:54 p.m. The top wind gust that afternoon was 40 miles per hour at 4:35 p.m.