published Monday, January 6th, 2014

700 lose power in Brainerd, East Brainerd; Signal Mountain electricity restored

A total of 719 Chattanooga residents lost power in Brainerd and East Brainerd just after 8:20 p.m. due to heavy power loads, according to EPB spokesman John Pless.

"It's a combination of two things: the weather, and the load," Pless said.

A similar outage on Signal Mountain that saw 1,800 homes lose power was caused by a wire that burned due to the heavy electrical draw coming from homes in the area.

Attempts to restore power on Signal Mountain included diverting electricity to another wire, which also became heavily loaded and failed. EPB restored power to Signal Mountain residents after a two-hour outage.

The power loss along Missionary Ridge saw 467 Brainerd and 127 East Brainerd residents lose their heat, and their ability to watch the national championship game between Auburn and FSU.

The outages occur as the Chattanooga area braces for its second straight night of severely cold weather.

Pless said EPB plans to have crews on hand overnight to deal with any power issues that may arise.

“We have both the extreme cold affecting our equipment, and the high demand on our system peaking tonight and in the early morning,” said Pless. He said transformers and other equipment may be at risk for malfunctioning if it is overloaded.

While most area residents will be cranking their thermostats to guard against the cold, Pless advised that people “to conserve even just a little bit if they can” for the sake of the system.

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