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UPDATE: High Winds Leave Trail Of Damage Across Magic Valley

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By Paul Johnson
By Brandon Redmond

Magic Valley (KMVT-TV) UPDATE: "It just got busy for us," said Stacey Thomas of the Rock Creek Fire District.

Busy was an understatement for fire departments and utility crews on Tuesday. Dark storm clouds and high winds rolled through the magic valley knocking down trees and power lines. One tree fell on top of the filer middle school.

"Well the big storm came through and all of a sudden we heard a noise and my secretary said, I think a tree just fell on the side of the school," said Shane Hild, the Filer Middle School Principal.

Large trees were down at the Twin Falls County Fairgrounds and the twin falls municipal golf course. The storm also affected the roads. Highway 30 was closed just east of Kimberly for much of Tuesday afternoon when a tree and live power lines fell across the road.

"Waiting on Idaho power to actually disconnect this line. Right now everybody's busy in the valley so we could be here a little bit," said Stacey Thomas, Captain with the Rock Creek Fire District.

At the height of the storm, Idaho power reported eleven thousand customers without power. Crews were called in from Boise to help speed up restoration efforts.

The City of Twin Falls will open the wood waste collection site through the 17th to allow citizens to dispose of branches and other wood debris fallen during the storm on Tuesday. The facility is located at 987 Rose Street.

ORIGINAL STORY:

Southern Idaho (KMVT-TV) - Thousands of Idaho Power customers are without power this afternoon and there are many reports of uprooted trees following a storm that passed through the area. Idaho Power spokesman Kevin Winslow said that 11,000 customers were affected by the storm. In and around Filer, there are 2100 customers. In Twin Falls, 1800, Kimberly 750, Jerome 1700 and Buhl, 1400. Winslow said that there are scattered outages that have been reported including Minidoka, Cassia, Jerome, Gooding, Twin Falls and Lincoln Counties.

As of 3pm this afternoon, 5500 customers are without power with the majority in the Filer area. Winslow estimates about 1800 in Filer remain without service. To assist, two power crews have been dispatched from Boise to assist. Winslow added, “If you see a line on the ground, treat as though it was energized; stay far away and keep others away. Contact Idaho Power at 1-800-488-6151.”

Meanwhile, more storm damage has been reported in the local area. Photos attached to this story are from the Filer area. The large tree is at the Twin Falls Municipal Golf Course.


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