Webster Groves Power Outages Caused By A Truck

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WEBSTER GROVES, MO. (KTVI) - Some Webster Groves residents were left in the heat on Monday afternoon after a bizarre accident took out power near Big Bend Boulevard and Laclede Station Rd.

Witnesses said a semi drove into power lines and stretched them until a power pole snapped in half.

The accident tied up traffic for most of the day while Ameren Missouri crews worked to restore power.

"I tried to stay out of my house as much as I could," said Becky McFarland.  She was one of about 500 customers without power in the 63119 zip code.

Jennifer Kube kept checking on the repair crews for progress reports.  She couldn't imagine working on power lines in triple digit heat.

'Hope they had a lot of cold water,' said Kube.

Residents said the power outage lasted from about 9:30 a.m. until 4:30 p.m.  One resident threw her arms up in the air when she noticed the power was back on.

'Relieved not just for us but for our dog and cat and the food in the refrigerator,' said Kube.

Bruce Umbaugh credited Ameren Missouri crews for working in the heat.

"They worked real hard in lots of heat and got it back for us quickly," said Umbaugh.  "I appreciate that."

Ameren Missouri spent millions of dollars to upgrade its system to try and avoid rolling blackouts that some communities experience during extreme heat.

Kevin Anders with Ameren Mo said the company upgraded the conductor on distribution lines and upgraded transformers to higher capacity units across the power system.

The company also looks for ways to switch customers to a different power grid if there is an outage.