PPL: Crews Working to Restore Power to Mountainview

As of late Monday, PPL reportedly has two crews working to restore power to a large chunk of Hellertown that was blacked out when trees toppled power lines in the vicinity of Lost River Caverns Sunday.

UPDATE, Aug. 29, 5:45pm: As of 4pm PPL had two crews on scene, with plans to restore power throughout the area this afternoon and evening. Residents whose power is not restored by tonight are advised to call 1-800-DIAL-PPL (1-800-342-5775) to report the outage. 

UPDATE, Aug. 29, 2:30pm: Photos just uploaded to this story reveal the full extent of damage to power lines and transformers along Durham Street in Hellertown. The trees were toppled by Hurricane Irene's high winds Sunday, taking utility poles with them.

Patch freelancer and eyewitness to the devastation , who captured the new images, reports that the tall trees came down "in domino-style effect" near the entrance to , which remains closed. "The cave is without power which made the pumps stop so the river came up and flooded the cave pretty bad," Yorgey observed. The cave is expected to remain closed for at least several days, she added. Durham Street in the vicinity of the cave also remains closed to traffic.

Although most of the was localized and well under control by Monday morning, continued to be felt in the form of .

In Hellertown, Police Chief Robert Shupp has issued a statement advising residents of the Mountainview section--east of Rentzheimer Drive to the borough line--to be prepared for an outage lasting two to four days.

According to the statement, that estimated timeframe was provided to the borough by PPL.

"Because of this we are advising residents in this area to leave and stay with friends or family," Shupp said. "If you choose to stay and you find yourself in an emergency situation dial 911."

Shupp also advised residents to exercise caution if using candles to light their homes during the power outage.

Staying with friends or family instead of in the dark, he said, would be "the safest option," due to the risk of fire. All appliances should be turned off if residents do plan to leave their homes, "because when the power is restored a surge can occur, resulting in further power loss or damage," he added.

Members of the Hellertown Police Department will be going from door-to-door in the neighborhood to advise residents of the situation, and their names will be provided to the American Red Cross of the Greater Lehigh Valley if they require extended services, Shupp said.

As of 5am Monday, PPL was reporting a total of 123,000 customers still without power as a result of Hurricane Irene.

In Hellertown, .

Most Lower Saucon customers who lost power during the weekend storm have now had it restored, according to the company's online Outage Center map, which indicated that 317 township customers were still without power as of 11:29am Monday.

In the Borough of Hellertown, 815 customers are still without power, according to the map.

Also, in Lehigh County many customers of the electric provider are still in the dark, including a number of businesses at The Promenade Shops at Saucon Valley.

The Upper Saucon Township lifestyle center has a scrolling message at the top of its website's homepage advising customers to call individual stores to find out if they have power and are open for business.

Stephanie Brown August 29, 2011 at 04:49 PM
In light of the recent series of natural disaster related events, it is very important for Borough and Township Offcials to have a public meeting regarding emergency preparededness, which seems to be lacking in this community. Though there are area of both the Borough and Township that regualry flood, many people are not prepared. And too many people drive around baracades. ONe never knows how bad flooding will be and might have to evacuate. Apublic plnning session with the County OEM offcials and the volunteers from the firedepartment could be a great assest for this community.
Robin J Rotherham August 29, 2011 at 05:29 PM
By the way, this power outage includes the Hellertown Area Library. The book drop is open and will be checked regularly. No materials are due and fines will be waved.
Mark Petruno August 29, 2011 at 05:45 PM
Barricades are put there for a reason...anyone that goes around the barricade should get what is coming to them...it means stay out...how hard is that to understand, their fine should be doubled...they are just idiots...pure idiots...
Josh Popichak (Editor) August 29, 2011 at 06:35 PM
We've uploaded some new photos and posted an update to this story.
Thomas Rieger August 29, 2011 at 08:39 PM
PPL Update as of 4:00pm on 8/29 As of 4:00 pm this afternoon PPL has two crews on scene. PPL plans to restore power to  the affected area throughout the this afternoon and evening.  If your power is not restored by late tonight please call and report the outage. To 1-800-DIAL-PPL (1-800-342-5775).
Josh Popichak (Editor) August 29, 2011 at 11:13 PM
One of PPL's vans was spotted on Durham Street late this afternoon and some borough residents are starting to report that their power has been restored.
Stacey August 30, 2011 at 11:29 AM
I am going to use this time to say that the cave owner needs to address his trees that border his property and run the risk of doing damage to neighbors. Thankfully no one was injured this time. I do understand that this storm was reason for "this" tree to come down. However he has many trees that border his property that are about to fall onto neighbors homes and PP&L lines again. This was not the first one of his to come down and not the last. The last one took down lines took out power for a day or so and did property damage. I can see from my property at least 5 trees just in this past season that have come down either because of rot and or uprooted. It should not be at the expense of the fearful neighbors. There is a huge tree that is totally rotted out the back and headed to crush 2 homes. Pretty scaring sleeping at night when all you can hear are creaking trees. I think he needs to do something.


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