Watts News
 Published for the members of North Itasca Electric Cooperative
VOL. 21 NO. 8  -  August 2018

Roxanne's Sales Talk


Those of us who have lived here all our lives know this happens and we do what we can to prepare if we know a bad storm is coming. I always fill the bathtub or a few buckets of water so you can still flush the toilet. Make sure you have gas for the generator and the camp stove. If you donít have a camp stove, then have charcoal for the grill, so you can still cook. You can also freeze some jugs with clean water and then use in your cooler and, as they thaw, use for drinking water. Have candles and a lighter ready along with batteries for flashlights and radios.

However, people who have cabins up here who donít come from an area where there are a lot of trees sometimes find it very frustrating because they donít understand why it takes us so long to get the power back on.

Well, it helps to look at the big picture. When your power goes out and you see one tree down remember that we have 770 miles of overhead lines and 580 miles of underground lines spread all over different parts of our system. Depending on which direction the storm comes from, there might be trees down all the way through.

We are a small Co-op with 17 employees and only 6 are linemen. Those 6 linemen cover all those miles working hard to get everyone restored, sometimes cutting trees all the way there just to get to the outage. Then they must walk the lines and remove trees, put up new poles if needed and repair whatís down, all this takes time. We realize being without power is no fun and in a big city where there are more linemen and not all the trees, your outages probably donít last that long. We wish it could be the same when youíre here at your cabin, but it will never be.

Iím a firm believer that everyone should have a generator. Even if your power has never gone off, Sooner or later it will happen and having a generator will save you all the frustration and worry about losing all your food and such. Generators arenít that expensive, and you donít have to necessarily have a whole house generator, ďalthough they are niceĒ to have peace of mind. You can invest in a smaller one to keep the refrigerator and freezer, water pump and a few lights going.

You can finance a Briggs and Stratton Generator through North Itasca Electric if youíd like, call and ask for Jerry Loney if youíre interested, he can help you decide what size you need according to what your comfort level is.

Please be careful when hooking up generators! If you donít know what youíre doing, talk to an electrician or you could end up electrocuting the linemen who are working to get your power back on. Each year linemen die due to someone energizing the line. Help keep our linemen safe!

Return to the August 2018 Issue