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Citywide blackout set for Friday

October 31, 2013

BY JUSTIN MINYARD
news@dailytimesleader.com

West Point residents are about to find themselves in the dark.

A blackout has been scheduled for customers receiving electricity from the city from 1 to 6 a.m. Friday.

The blackout is the city’s response to a defunct “pole,” which ultimately serves as Tennessee Valley Association’s (TVA) conduit by which it transports electricity from its substations to West Point’s substations, where electricity inevitably winds up in the dwellings of city residents. In order to make the maintenance as safe as possible for the crews set to work on replacing the pole, the electrically active objects in close vicinity to the pole needed to be rendered inactive.

West Point Water and Electric Superintendent Dwight Prisock said the maintenance should be a fairly painless process, though.

“It should go smooth,” said Prisock. “We’re expecting it to take about three hours if everything goes perfect.”

Although the blackout is scheduled to last into the waking hours of the day, the restoration of power to the city is ultimately dependent on the duration of said maintenance, said Prisock.

“If the (process is completed) in two and a half hours, then power is restored in two and a half hours,” Prisock said.

The last blackout West Point underwent, according to Prisock, was three and a half years ago when a string of tornadoes struck the area. However, the passing of time will have no effect on the efficiency of the maintenance crew working to restore power, nor law enforcement and emergency response entities.

However, late night crawlers will be in a tight spot as the West Point Police Department plans to enforce a four-hour curfew starting at the beginning of the blackout and ending at 5 a.m. in an effort to prevent mischief.

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