Hydro crews battle shoulder-high snow to restore power in Tahsis, Zeballos


A major winter storm that hit the island Tuesday knocked out a major transmission line between Gold River, Tahsis and Zeballos knocking out power to 711 customers.

Helicopters contracted by BC Hydro have been flying when they can due to weather as crews attempt to repair the outages.

“In some areas snow has been shoulder high so you can imagine how challenging it’s been there for crews,” said BC Hydro’s Ted Olynyk.

“We required a helicopter to get in there to hoist crews down to start some of the work. We’ve been able to get a large bulldozer in there to help with the work and tracks and ATVs, everything we can to get in there and complete the work.”

READ MORE: Campbell River, Gold River see heavy snowfall leading to road challenges

“It’s really been the worst time to be without power for this long considering the weather. I think that’s what’s been making things that much direr for the community is the weather,” said Zeballos Mayor Julie Colborne Sunday.

As of 6:15 p.m. on Sunday, BC Hydro says power has been restored to the area.

Colborne said a warming centre was set up and supplies have been brought in by an organization called Helicopters without Borders as well as an RCMP helicopter.

Gold River saw over 120 cm of snow in recent weeks and that combined with power outages has caused issues there as well.

The only gas station was down for a few days last week because of a chip issue that occurred when the power came back on, according to Gold River mayor Brad Unger.

The pumps were working again Sunday.

Dean StoltzDean Stoltz

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