Downed Trees and Power Outages Expected with Oregon Ice Storm

As the Pacific Northwest gears up for the approaching winters, the probability of ice storms in Oregon and nearby areas is high. And these could lead to more fallen trees, which may bring down some powerlines.

Chris Ruvalcaba, the owner of Monkeyman’s Tree Service in Lake Oswego, said that the crews of his company have started preparing themselves for the oncoming ice storms. The company will be ready to respond to any calls they might get from the public.

An arborist himself, Ruvalcaba thinks that when it comes to managing trees, one should ideally start preparing for the winter season while the weather is still hot. However, in his opinion, this is still a good time to pay attention to all the large trees and branches in and around one’s property. This is especially if such trees are near powerlines or other structures.

He also had some tips on managing trees in winter. According to him, it is a good idea to use a broom to knock or shake off any ice accumulating on smaller ornamental trees. This should be done as soon as you notice water freezing on the branches or leaves, as the ice is easier to get off when it hasn’t accumulated too much. However, the best option is to hire the services of a certified and reputed arborist.

He went on to say, “Folks don’t realize, snow is 90 percent air, and ice is 90 percent water. Water weighs a little more than 8 pounds a gallon. When you got hundreds and hundreds of gallons of water on a tree it can be catastrophic.”

As per representatives from Portland General Electric, they have taken proactive steps all year to ensure that branches are cleared from all powerlines within their service area. The public utility also has kept crews on standby to respond to instances of power outages caused due to fallen trees or branches. In addition, their Integrated Operations Center is all set to help restore power in the affected areas.

In a statement to the public, one of their spokesmen said, “We think about staffing holistically, from crews at the front lines to our Incident Management team (which leads our response to incidents like major storms), to get prepared for what the weather may bring. Additionally, our Integrated Operations Center serves as a nerve center that allows PGE to use remote sensors and weather stations, among other systems, to monitor and control our system – and the factors that are affecting it. This way, we can more quickly respond and address any impact of weather and weather-related outages.”

According to some Lake Oswego Auto Accident Lawyers, such ice storms always pose a danger to people driving on the roads as the chances of accidents increase. The lack of visibility and slippery roads are some major causes of traffic crashes occurring in Oregon and other parts of the US during winter every year. Therefore, it is recommended that people avoid driving or going out during an ice storm unless absolutely necessary.

This will lower the possibilities of unintended traffic crashes, as well as accidents caused due to fallen trees and powerlines.

Both Portland General Electric and Pacific Power have emphasized the importance of a winter weather outage kit. The kit should contain essential supplies such as water, canned food, blankets, a car charger for charging electronics, flashlights, batteries, and more. In case of outages, the public can call Portland General Electric at (503)-464-7777 for reporting. Likewise, people need to call 1-877-508-5088 to report outages to Pacific Power. Outages can also be reported through the app of both utilities.


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