Sometimes you just have to trust the weather forecast.
Sometimes you just have to trust the weather forecast. April 10 and 11 was one of those times when the snowstorm that meteorologist talked about for several days arrived on schedule and in force.
Snow, with very poor visibility, on Wednesday morning, April 10, led to the early closure of most area schools — and kept them closed on Thursday.
One very visible storm damage spot in Sleepy Eye is the front window at BJ’s Salon. “I was there at 9 a.m. on Thursday, to set our phone message that we were closed and grab the appointment book to take home,” said owner Julie Cook. “At 9:15 I got the first call that the window had been sucked right out of the frame—along with a few screens from the upstairs windows.”
Cook said luckily one of the first people to see the damage was John Zuhlsdorf, who had some plywood on his truck and covered the opening right away.
“All the glass landed outside,” said Cook, “There was no damage inside the shop.”
Many rural area suffered power outages during the storm. According to Brandon Havemeier, Operations Manager for Brown County REA, approximately 1,700 members in their service territory were affected by the storm at one point. “This number was high due to issues with the transmission lines,” said Havemeier. “Our crews assisted the transmission company to make some changes, which restored power to many of Brown County REA's members. Once the transmission work was complete, BCREA crews began the work to restore power to approximately 600 members. We had 10 downed or damaged poles and other work involved repairing overhead lines.”
Havemeier said Brown County REA began experiencing outages due to the weather around 1 a.m. Thursday. Power was restored to the majority of the members by 9 p.m. Thursday.
“We had six linemen assist with outages in the BENCO Electric (Mankato) territory on Saturday and Sunday. They were Mike Suess, Brady Kerkhoff, Nick Horman, Drew Hill, Zach Gulden, and Tyler Jensen,” said Havemeier. “The majority of their duties consisted of replacing broken poles due to the ice accumulation and strong winds.”
Havemeier assisted Nobles Cooperative Electric, based in Worthington, with driving line and tracking inventory. “The Nobles territory was among the state's hardest hit, with 400 transmission poles and 200 distribution poles taken down by the storm,” he said.