The Great Wind Storm of March 8 & 9
Tree roots were already saturated from heavy rains earlier in the week when a 12-hour wind storm swept across Central Electric Cooperative’s (CEC's) seven-county area of Allegheny, Armstrong, Butler, Clarion, Forest, Mercer and Venango counties March 8 and 9.
CEC CEO and General Manager Matt Boshaw described the restoration efforts as “trying to bail out a sinking boat.” As linemen restored electric in affected areas, winds gusted in other areas, taking out power to a different set of members -- or in some instances -- the just-restored members! CEC crews worked nonstop around the clock. Thursday morning, crews from Adams Electric Cooperative, located near Gettysburg, arrived to assist.
At the peak, 3,300 members were without power. Over the course of the storm, 7,400 members experienced power loss. But the "boat never swamped" and crews were able to keep up with the pace of the outages.
While no one can predict or control storms, CEC has an aggressive line clearing and maintenance program that helps minimize outages, and the inconvenience to members who experience power interruptions.
Central Electric Cooperative thanks its members for their patience throughout this event.