Teton Village is not officially evacuated, but according to Sgt. Matt Carr of Teton County Sheriff’s Office, “It is turning into a ghost town right now.” Around 3,500 to 4,000 customers went without power Tuesday night causing the mass exodus of Teton Village, Jackson Hole Airport and the subdivisions of John Dodge, Bar B Bar and Solitude after 100+ mph wind storm whipped through the area.
Resort spokeswoman Anna Cole can confirm the resort will be closed through the weekend but did not state an estimate of when they plan to reopen as reported by jhnewsandguide.com. Most news outlets place the reopening timeline as indefinite.
Cellular service in the Teton Village area has been reported as spotty or nonexistent because cell towers have lost power. Teton County Public Information Specialist Cindy Harger said that getting the cellular towers back online is a priority on the Lower Valley Energy’s list.
Lower Valley Energy spokesman Brian Tanabe said:
“Power could be out to the Village for five to seven days as the utility company works to replace the transmission line that serves the area. All Lower Valley crews have been pressed into service as well as staff and equipment from five neighboring utilities in the region to help replace the 17 transmission poles that snapped Tuesday night.”
Lower Valley’s plan today is to clear snow to each of the downed steel poles and begin erecting wooden poles to hold the power line temporarily. Tanabe further explained the complicated fix:
“Most of the power lines you see in our service territory are smaller distribution lines. When distribution lines go down we can more easily re-route power to energize the affected areas. Transmission lines feed large amounts of power to our substations, which are then distributed out to our customers. When the transmission system fails for whatever reason, the line needs to be entirely repaired versus re-routing power.”
We are sending energy and positive vibes to all the hardworking people trying to get one of the world’s finest resorts back in operation. Judging by the video below they have their work cut out for themselves:
[images from hnewsandguide.com]