Storm, substation transformer cause power outages
The City of Crete saw two major power outages in two days last week, the first caused by a transformer failure, the second by severe weather. Both were handled quickly by the electric department crew with assistance from other departments.
On the afternoon of June 4, a substation-class transformer went offline, affecting the Nestle Purina plant, Walmart, Crete Are Medical Center, and surrounding area.
The electric department crew quickly switched over to alternative power and the Public Works Department began looking into testing and repair options. Current replacement estimates for this large transformer could be about $500,000 and take up to 36 weeks for delivery
Late Thursday night a severe storm with high winds caused part of the transmission line that feeds the entire city to come down across Highway 33 at Boswell Ave. Crete Police officers blocked the highway so the electric department could repair the line and put it back up.
The storm also caused a very large cottonwood tree to fall into the transmission line near Hawthorne Ave. early Friday morning. Rather than try to cut the tree out with the community out of power, the decision was made to reroute the transmission line feeds two ways from the substation south of Smithfield into Crete to get power back on. Crews removed the tree Friday morning.