Advertisement

About 40 percent of Linn County residents are still without power; Cedar Rapids prohibiting outdoor fires

  • 37
    Shares

House in Cedar Rapids with tree branches and debris piled in front of it. — Jason Smith/Little Village

A week after a derecho wreaked havoc on Iowa, almost 40 percent of Linn County residents are still without electricity. Linn County was one of the areas in the state hit hardest by the storm.

A total of 41,104 customers — 36.7 percent — are without power in the county, as of Monday at noon. Most of these individuals — 40,122 customers — are Alliant Energy customers. When the derecho hit, nearly 100,000 Linn County residents were out of power, said Joel Schmidt, the company’s vice president of business development.

Linn County residents with outages account for nearly 60 percent of the total outages in the state. Iowa was reporting 67,537 outages statewide as of noon on Monday.

Map of power outage in Iowa by county as of Monday afternoon. — screengrab from PowerOutage.US

At a Monday news conference in Cedar Rapids, Alliant Energy reiterated their commitment from last Friday that power will be restored to a “significant number” of customers by end of day Tuesday. Schmidt estimated about 90 percent of customers, including in Cedar Rapids and Linn County, will have power.

There are more than 2,000 workers replacing power lines, with about 1,300 of those workers on the ground in Cedar Rapids, Schmidt said. Another 400 workers are coming into the area today to help with restoring power lines and tree trimming.

Jen Winter, the city’s director of public works, said power has been restored to about 100 of the city’s traffic signals, which is about half of the system. Winter said last week that all of the city’s 190 intersections got damaged.

Cedar Rapids adds burn ban

Fire Chief Greg Smith announced that a burn ban has been added to the city’s emergency proclamation.

“We want to remind citizens that burning debris is prohibited within the city limits and now outdoor recreational fires are also prohibited,” Smith said during the press conference. “Citizens can still use dry firewood in a fire pit to cook food for the period of time necessary to prepare the food only but then shall extinguish it. Charcoal and propane grills may still be used by single family homeowners for the duration of cooking the food.”

Smith said individuals with asthma, breathing conditions and those trying to stay cool are affected by the smoke lingering in the air. There is also an increased fire risk since tree debris is drying out.

City crews have picked up 5,600 truckloads of debris as of Sunday night, Winter said.

However, there is still a “staggering amount of debris” in the city, Winter said. If individuals don’t want to wait for the city to pick up their tree debris, they can drop it off at the former Cooper’s Mill location, F Avenue and 1st Street NW. Since the site opened Saturday morning, Winter said more than 1,000 vehicles stopped by to drop off debris. The site is open daily from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Smith also mentioned the city’s police department and fire department have been getting double the amount of calls.

SIGN UP TODAY

Subscribe for daily news updates from Little Village

SUBSCRIBE

“We are seeing about an average of 350 to 400 911 calls daily and approximately 700 to 800 nonemergency calls daily. Our normal average is about 200 911 calls and 500 non emergency calls per day,” Smith said.

Share your storm story with Little Village

  • 37
    Shares
Thoughts? Tips? A cute picture of a dog? Share them with LV » editor@littlevillagemag.com

Advertisement

Advertisement

Summer Programs 2020

Get 150+ local restaurants delivered to your door in the Iowa City & Cedar Rapids areas!

The Future is Unwritten

You look to Little Village for today’s stories. Your sustaining support will help us write tomorrow’s.

Regular

$10/mo or $120/year
(AUTO-RENEW)
The cost of doing this work really adds up! Your contribution at this level will cover telephone and internet expenses for one month at the LV editorial offices.

Italic

$20/mo or $240/year
(AUTO-RENEW)
$240 is enough to cover one month’s costs for sending out our weekly entertainment newsletter, The Weekender. Make a contribution at this level to put a little more oomph on your support and your weekend.

Bold

$30/mo or $360/year
(AUTO-RENEW)
LittleVillageMag.com connects eastern Iowa culture with the world. Your contribution at this level will cover the site’s hosting costs for three months. A bold move for our boldest supporters!

All monthly and annual contributors receive:

  • Recognition on our Supporters page (aliases welcome)
  • Exclusive early access when we release new half-price gift cards
  • Access to a secret Facebook group where you can connect with other supporters and discuss the latest news and upcoming events (and maybe swap pet pics?) with the LV staff
  • Invitations to periodic publisher chats (held virtually for now) to meet with Matt and give him a piece of your mind, ask your burning questions and hear more about the future plans for Little Village, Bread & Butter Magazine, Witching Hour Festival and our other endeavors.

Advertisement

Randy's Flooring is a local, employee-owned retailed that has been part of the Corridor for over 40 years, delivering quality and value through the largest selection of carpet, tile, hardwood, window treatments, and specialty products supported by the knowledgeable staff and in-house flooring designers who can help transform residential and commercial spaces.

 
Get Started