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Lightning strike causes power trouble in village

More than 370 Coal Grove homes and businesses were without power Sunday while American Electric Power crews worked to repair lightning damage at the AEP Coal Grove Station.

Monday, August 02, 1999

More than 370 Coal Grove homes and businesses were without power Sunday while American Electric Power crews worked to repair lightning damage at the AEP Coal Grove Station.

No power and extreme heat caused residents of Sunset Nursing home to relocate temporarily to River Valley Health System in Ironton, said Diane Young, a registered nurse at Sunset Nursing Home.

"All of our patients had to be moved to RVHS for the weekend, and they are coming back here today," Ms. Young said. "When the transformer up here blew, our generator wasn’t able to take care of all the electricity and the air conditioning, too."

Although the lights and other electrical appliances remained serviceable, the air conditioning placed too much of a strain on the generator. Health care professionals at the center decided transferring the patients until AEP crews alleviated the problem was in the best interest of the patients, she said.

Other customers without power during the outage and subsequent repairs included those north of Crow Ridge, including the Buck creek, Sharp Creek and Kitts Hill areas, as well as those along Ohio 141.

"We lost the station transformer at 10:45 p.m. Saturday and we were able to transfer the majority of the other customers to adjacent stations," said Joe Pemberton, AEP District Manager. "Unfortunately, there was an area on Ohio 141 that we could not pick up from adjacent stations and those customers remained without power until the work was completed."

When lightening struck the station transformer and the initial outage occurred, AEP crews moved in to assess the damage and to make needed repairs, he said.

"We had to put a mobile transformer in the Coal Grove station, which means we will have to make a transformer replacement at a later date," Pemberton said. "What we did over the weekend was emergency work to get the station re-energized and the customers back in service."

Although AEP will soon have to replace the emergency transformer, customers shouldn’t notice any interruption in service when that happens, he added.

Crews restored power to all customers by 7:16 p.m. Sunday, Pemberton said.

"All the customers at that time were transferred back to the Coal Grove station, which is still being served off the mobile transformer," he said.