Strong winds Tuesday night knocked out power for tens of thousands of Avista Utilities customers in north Idaho and Washington. On Wednesday, Avista accepted Idaho Power’s offer to send several crews, plus trucks and other equipment, north to help turn the lights back on.
BOISE, Idaho — Four Idaho Power line crews traveled to north Idaho and northeastern Washington to help neighboring energy company Avista Utilities restore power to thousands of customers.
A storm Tuesday night brought strong winds that knocked down poles across a wide swath of Washington and north Idaho. On Wednesday, Avista accepted Idaho Power’s offer of help in the form of 22 workers and their equipment: seven bucket trucks, three backhoes, two side-by-side vehicles with snow tracks in place of tires and four line beds, which dig holes and set new poles.
Idaho Power’s crews will work alongside Avista crews under the Western Regional Mutual Aid Agreement, a pact between dozens of major energy companies across the western United States.
“The mutual aid agreement was made for times like these,” said Bo Hanchey, Vice President of Customer Operations. “Everything we do begins and ends with a focus on customers. Even though these aren’t our customers, we’re more than happy to help them get their lights back on and their homes warm again.”
Idaho Power’s workers are expected to continue helping Avista for up to five days.
Media note: Photos are available on request.
About Idaho Power
Idaho Power, headquartered in vibrant and fast-growing Boise, Idaho, has been a locally operated energy company since 1916. Today, it serves a 24,000-square-mile area in Idaho and Oregon. The company’s goal to provide 100% clean energy by 2045 builds on its long history as a clean-energy leader that provides reliable service at affordable prices. With 17 low-cost hydroelectric projects at the core of its diverse energy mix, Idaho Power’s residential, business and agricultural customers pay among the nation’s lowest prices for electricity. Its 2,000 employees proudly serve more than 580,000 customers with a culture of safety first, integrity always and respect for all.