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Storm leaves thousands without power in southwestern Manitoba

Thousands of Manitobans are without power as the ongoing snow and rain are damaging power lines. With poor road conditions and flooding, Manitoba Hydro says it may take a while to get the lights back on.

As of Sunday afternoon, Manitoba Hydro was dealing with more than 900 outages affecting more than 13,500 customers.

Bruce Owen, a media relations officer at Manitoba Hydro, said the areas hardest hit by the outages include southwestern Manitoba – places like Boissevain, Virden, Morden and up into the Dauphin region.

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“We’re working to get everybody up as soon as possible,” Owen told CTV News. “Some people will be out until the evening hours. We anticipate due to the nature of the weather and the road conditions that some customers in rural outlying areas may be out until tomorrow.”

Owen said mother nature’s April storm is causing the outages.

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He said as temperatures dipped amid the precipitation Saturday, ice has started to form on the power lines which is weighing them down. Mix that with the wind, which is leading to snapped power lines and broken poles.

Manitoba hydro ice lines 1 5874101 1650824256141 nationalManitoba Hydro said on April 24, 2022, ice has started to form on power lines which is weighing them down, leading to outages. (Source: Manitoba Hydro)

Manitoba Hydro estimates there are about 100 broken poles in the Dauphin area alone. 

Manitoba Hydro has said crews from other districts in the province are heading to western Manitoba to deal with the outages.

However, Owen said the storm is causing challenges for crews.

“We’re seeing incidences of overland flooding, and in some areas where we have to go, on gravel roads, are these roads are in really rough shape,” he said. “We use the same roads as everybody else. So if you’re not travelling, we can get to where we need to go, but it’s just going to be a little slower.”

Owen asked residents to be patient as crews work to restore power. He said this is an important reminder to have an emergency kit ready to go in case of a power outage. Manitoba Hydro has shared tips on how to prepare for outages.

Manitobans can report power outages online.

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