Monday, June 09, 2008

Whistling in the Dark

A fire engine lights the way to the power plant.

On Saturday, I was just looking for a nice mellow evening for the second night of my two day weekend. Instead of heading to the Red Neck party, I settled in to watch Evil Dead 2. About thirty minutes in, as the owners of the cabin in the movie were returning home, the lights and TV went out in Raja's room in 155. I assumed the building had lost power. The wind had been blowing condition 2 all day and I assumed a power line came loose. After a quick look around, I was proved very wrong.


The entire base had lost power. The only lights were emergency lights run by generators. The Red Neck party was stopped dead in its tracks as pagers sounded from one end of the hall to the other. Those pages were followed up by ringing phones. Growing up, we just sat tight in a power outage and someone we probably never met before took care of it. Here, someone we know has to go to work.

Hanging out in the not-so-dark.

Luckily, we were hanging out with an electrician. He had a flashlight that worked like a lantern. He grabbed it from his room dropped it off for us on his way to work. I think we were one of those few rooms with a substantial amount of light. We just kept enjoying the evening as usual, but as the power outage continued, my mind began to wonder.

The weather outside during the power outage. June 8, 2008 by K. Barlow.

How long could we last if we didn't have power? The weather had been warm, but incredibly windy all week. I didn't like the idea of suddenly not having heat. Being cold isn't bad when you always have the option of going inside to warm up, being cold all the the time is a different story. Even if we didn't get the power back up, we have enough fuel, supplies, and quality shelter to probably survive for months if not years. It just wouldn't be as cozy without our luxuries like cookie day.

Working in the powerplant to restore power. June 8, 2008 by K. Barlow.

After seventy-five minutes, they got the power up and running again. I don't know the details of what happened except the new power plant's CO2 system discharged and they had to bring the old power plant back online. The responders did a great job and were soon back to making merry at the Red Neck party.

Power starts to come back on.

Current temperature -14.0°C/7F.
Outdoor Monthly Average -13.5°C/8°F
Wind Speed Monthly Average 16kts/18mph
Monthly Peak Wind Speed 59kts/68mph

1 comment:

  1. Thank God that didn't happen during Main Body....that was my biggest fear having to deal with that while I was on duty....