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Storm Impacts

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Storm Restoration Video, courtesy North West Rural Electric Cooperative. Special thanks to North West REC Drone Pilot and Staking &GPS Technician for his work on this video compilation.


15 April 2019 1500

Blue skies and all clear! Northwest Iowa Power Cooperative linemen, along with 90 contractors/MidAmerican Energy transmission crews, completed storm restoration late on Saturday night. The NIPCO linemen will be on site today to clean up some small items, but power has been restored and contractor crews have been released.

Thank you to the entire crew for all the hard work and dedication to rebuilding the damaged line and restoring power.

12 April 2019 1525

Great progress is being made to rebuild the damaged line.

The .5 mile of line near L8 is anticipated to be complete by Saturday morning.

Crews are "wrecking out" (removing/retiring) damaged poles on the 2.5 mile stretch of line and will being to replace poles with TP-69 (transmission post for 69kV) structures. NIPCO anticipates work on this section to be complete by the end of the day on Saturday 14 April 2019.

Crews will be working until 2300 on 12 April 2019.

Work will resume at 0600 on 13 April 2019.

12 April 2019 1052

Restoration activities will shift in to high gear today as NIPCO, North West REC, MidAmerican Energy and contractors/crew from WATTs Electric, Par, and Intren continue the rebuild of 3 miles of damaged line near Orange City. The crews began wrecking out the fallen structures last night. Crews worked until approximately 2300 on 11 April 2019 before starting up, again, at 0600 on 12 April 2019.

There will be approximately 110 workers on the job site today and tomorrow. It is anticipated the line repairs (63 total structures, in all) will be completed by Monday morning, 15 April 2019.

11 April 2019 1455:

The Northwest Iowa Power Cooperative (NIPCO) 69kV Line between L1 and L8 (north/south line) near Orange City is on the ground. This section is approximately three miles long. This line section also has MidAmerican Energy distribution and fiber optic cable underbuilds.

All North West REC members served by this line have power through sectionalizing and looping the damaged part of NIPCO’s grid. It is our understanding that MEC (Mid American Energy Company) has approximately 300 customers that are dependent upon that fallen line section. NIPCO is working with two contractors and MEC and are in the process of determining the materials necessary to rebuild this line section as soon as possible.

NIPCO has also sustained minor damage near the J2 Station near Primghar, in O’Brien County. A couple of structures have broken near the J2 Station. Again, all REC members’ load has been looped and is being served from alternate grid routes.

We have approximately 3 miles down consisting of 63, total, structures. These structures had MEC 3-phase distribution power lines under build, as well as a NIPCO ADSS (All-Dielectric Self Supporting) fiber optic cable under build. Fiber service on this line has not been impacted.

NIPCO has requested that WATTs Electric, a transmission contractor currently working for NIPCO, mobilize to the area northwest of Orange City with their 15-20 man crew and all associated equipment.

NIPCO’s transmission crew of 12 men and equipment is currently mobilized and will be working to get these lines up. It is anticipated that the Primghar line will be repaired by the end of the day. The 2.5-mile span, northwest of Orange City is anticipated to take 2-3 days to rebuild.

MEC will be sending multiple crews of transmission builders, as well.

Roadways in and around the impacted area have been barricaded. Travel is restricted to maintain the safety of our crews and the general public, while work is being done.

NIPCO Control Center Operators are tracking the unprecedented Winter Storm Wesley situation and monitoring forecasts over the next 24 hours.

11 April 2019 1135:

Crews are reporting 3 miles of impacted infrastructure caused by high winds and extreme weather produced by Winter Storm Wesley. NIPCO crews are on-site and assessing the damage.

Areas of impact:

West of Orange City, Iowa

  • .5-mile span of 69kV transmission line, running North-South from Orange City to Highway 10 is down and on the ground;
  • 2.5 mile span of 69kV transmission line, starting at B40, heading south, along Indian Avenue

North of J-2 (Spencer, Iowa):

  • 2 structures are also down on the ground


Roads may be barricaded as downed power lines may impact travel on roadways. Please do not travel in the affected areas.


There are no Rural Electric Cooperative Members without power at this time. For live updates on outage information impacting this area, please refer to the Iowa Association of Electric Cooperatives Outage Map (this map refreshes every 15 minutes).


  • NIPCO Staff and Control Center are monitoring restoration efforts and weather forecasts
  • Crews are on-site and safely assessing damage and restoration efforts and timelines
  • NIPCO is partnering with outside contractor, Watts Electric, to assist with restoration efforts
  • NIPCO is working with Mid-American Energy and their crews to assist with restoration efforts
Downed and Dangerous Image: If you see a downed power line, always assume it is energized and dangerous. Avoid going near it or anything in contact with the power line.

A downed power line may not be a dead line. It could cause serious injuries or death.

If someone is injured by contact with an electric power line, call 911 and keep others away until help arrives.

If a power line falls across or near your vehicle while you are in it, STAY INSIDE until help arrives. If you must exit, jump clear so that no part of your body is touching the car when you land. KEEP BOTH FEET TOGETHER, and shuffle or hop at least 30 feet away from the vehicle.

If you see a downed power line or impacted electric infrastructure or experience an outage, please call our office at 712-546-4141.


Serving Western Iowa

For more information

Contact: Angela Catton, NIPCO Manager of Member Relations & Development at 712-546-3505 (office) or 712-301-8545 (cell) or via email at