Ameren surges ahead to restore power to customers

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RICHMOND HEIGHTS, Mo. – Impact from Friday night’s powerful storms are still being felt Monday as thousands of Ameren Missouri customers remain without power.

Work has been non-stop for Ameren crews and contractors as they continue through their third day of cleaning up trees and fixing lines.

“That was one of the things about this particular storm was just there’s been so much tree damage that before you can even get to the electrical repairs you have to remove a large tree off of all the facilities so we’ve kept everybody busy the entire weekend working on that,” said Kevin Anders, vice president of Operations and Technical Services at Ameren Missouri.

Prioritizing critical facilities and larger outages first.

“Places that care for the elderly, hospitals, police stations, water, sewer, so those are the critical facilities. Grocery stores, large businesses, are also near the top there,” Anders said.

Over in Soulard, Kelly Kaighin, the owner of Billie’s Fine Foods, is still one of the customers waiting for power.

“It’s just devastating to a small business, especially after the pandemic and we had a fire. And you know I feel for everyone that’s going through this. It’s a nightmare. And I know that Ameren has a lot of people that they need to take care of. I’m just ready to be taken care of,” said Kaighin.

But her neighbors came together to help as much as they could after she put out a request on Facebook.

“Thank you, Soulard, for loving us, putting up with us, taking care of us. It takes a village to get us together. I have food in lots of refrigerators and freezers around town right now,” she said.

Meanwhile, in Richmond Heights, crews were working through the rain to restore power to 26 more customers after a large, rotted tree fell on some lines.

“They’ve done a great job. I can’t take that away from them. But there needs to be more out there in terms of alerting and saying hey this tree is bad we need to do something about it,” said Bill Carmody, a customer without power.

Ameren Missouri said they hope to have power restored to the rest of their customers by the end of Monday.

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