For immediate release:
4:00 p.m. – Wednesday, December 15, 2021
A severe windstorm is causing widespread power outages to San Isabel Electric members. The storm moved into the area around 6:30 a.m. At the peak of the storm, there were more than 9,000 meters without power, nearly half the membership.
Since then, power has been restored to more than 8,500 meters. An outage affecting the cities of Walsenburg and Trinidad began around 6:30 am. Power was restored to these areas around noon.
Currently, there are 1,310 meters without power. Here is a breakdown of how many meters are out in each of the seven counties SIEA serves:
- Custer 50
- Costilla 150
- Fremont 0
- Huerfano 500
- Las Animas 500
- Otero 10
- Pueblo 100
Due to the high fire danger and extreme conditions outages are taking longer than usual to restore. All lines must be patrolled to ensure all of damage has been identified before attempting to restore power.
SIEA has been in regular contact with local and state emergency managers throughout the storm.
Members who are expected to experience prolonged outages into the late evening or overnight, are being notified by phone and by email, if they have an email address on file.
Most of the outages are related the high winds, which have downed limbs, trees and powerlines in multiple areas. There have been no reports of severe or significant damage to SIEA’s equipment.
While wind speeds are decreasing, we expect the number of damage reports and outages to continue to increase as lines are inspected.
Always assume a downed powerline is deadly. Overhead power lines carry thousands of volts of electricity. If a line is down, always assume it is energized and dangerous, even if the power is out in your area. Touching or getting near a live power line injures and kills.
Never approach an accident scene where a line is down or damaged. If you run toward the accident to help, you too could become a victim by entering the energized area.
Outage status updates will continue to be posted every two hours at siea.com between 7 a.m. and 10 p.m. Members can report outages by texting OUT to 844-959-3013. San Isabel Electric’s mobile and online account management app SmartHub can be used to:
- Report power outages with a computer, tablet or smart phone
- View our outage map
- Track an outage’s status until power is restored
Outages can also be reported by calling 1-800-279-(SIEA) 7432. More information about outage reporting and preparedness is available at siea.com/safety.
San Isabel Electric’s outage restoration policy is to make repairs that will restore service to the most people in the least amount of time. Transmission lines and substations are repaired first, followed by distribution lines that feed neighborhoods. Tap lines and individual service lines are then repaired to restore power to customers who may still be without electricity.
San Isabel Electric is a cooperative utility, owned by a group of member-owners, that together provide electricity in remote, rural areas where larger, investor-owned utilities don’t find it profitable enough to serve.
A large portion of the electric cooperative’s lines and equipment are in remote-rural areas and/or are in rugged-terrain, not accessible by roads or vehicles. These areas are difficult to access during good weather and even more difficult to access during inclement weather. Lineworkers often face arduous weather and road conditions making their job very difficult and dangerous.
From our office staff to those out in the field, we appreciate your patience as we work to restore power as quickly as safely possible for everyone involved.
As a not-for-profit cooperative utility, San Isabel Electric provides affordable, reliable electricity with exceptional service to communities throughout southern Colorado. Serving 20,000 Member-owners and 24,000 meters, San Isabel Electric has been keeping the lights on since 1938. We don’t just serve communities. We are part of communities.