The weekend storms that passed through the metro area left behind a mass of trees, branches, and other debris. And with falling tree limbs come downed power lines. Electric companies across citywide had their hands full repairing lines and restoring power to the more than 95,000 customers affected by outages this weekend.
While some experienced spotty power outages, or only lost electricity for a few hours, Sunday afternoon there were still tens of thousands left in the dark.
"The first storm hit Friday night into Saturday. It effected about 32,000 of our customers. We worked all through the night and yesterday we got all but 3,000 of those customers back on. Then the second storm hit last night and after that the total is about 95,000 of our customers that have been impacted," said Chris Kurtz, Senior Director of Operations with KCP&L.
Kurtz said despite their round-the-clock efforts, they were still trying to get power back on for more than 33,000 people.
"We have been working all through the night, all day today and we’ll continue. We’ve gotten that number down to about 33,000 customers that are still without. That’s a lot, and we’ll continue to work on that 24/7 until we get it done," Kurtz added.
Various local governments have announced plans to help citizens with the clean up, including extra hours of drop off sites, and extra curbside pickups for branches and lawn debris.
Monday afternoon, KCP&L said in a statement that it had restored power to more than 91 percent of their affected customers, saying that they are still working to get to the remaining 8,500 customers still without power. The company said it had replaced more than 110 poles.
One FOX 4 viewer in Gladstone sent us photos of a large tree that snapped and fell directly between her two parked cars, missing them both by just a few feet.
It wasn't just homeowners that experienced the outages. Businesses were forced to close, and one BP station near Kauffman Stadium saw its massive metal sign knocked over by high winds, "uprooted" like a tree, as FOX 4's Robert Townsend observed Saturday night.
Kurtz said any delay in a return to service their customers are experiencing is due to the vast area the storm impacted.
"Our territory goes all the way to Iowa, almost to Springfield, one to Marshall almost to Boonville and this storm hit almost all of that territory. Both of them did. So we have damage all over our region because of this that we are having to address," he said.
The time it is taking for KCP&L to restore power isn't due to lack of effort, Kurtz assured.
"These guys are tired, they’ve been working since Friday," he said of his utility workers. "Very dangerous work. We want to make sure, more than anything else, that we do it safely. We don’t want to over stretch our people’s ability to respond and to do this type of dangerous work."