As electric cooperatives hit hard by last weekend's storm continue to dig out from the storm, the extent of damage is growing.
Co-ops are reporting more than 6,000 poles were downed in the storm which has caused continuing outages to rural electric cooperative members in 13 counties in western South Dakota.
More than 190 workers from electric cooperatives in South Dakota, Minnesota, Montana and North Dakota, in addition to crews from Nebraska public power districts, private contractors and the South Dakota National Guard are working to restore power to more than 4,200 rural South Dakotans.
Cooperatives reporting damages include:
Black Hills Electric Cooperative, Custer, S.D.
Butte Electric Cooperative, Newell, S.D.
Grand Electric Cooperative, Bison, S.D.
Lacreek Electric Association, Martin, S.D.
Moreau-Grand Electric Cooperative, Timber Lake, S.D.
West Central Electric Cooperative, Murdo, S.D.
West River Electric Association, Wall, S.D.
These outside crews are in addition to the more than 200 employees at the affected cooperatives who have been working since the beginning of the storm.
In northwestern South Dakota, Grand Electric is reporting damage in more than half of its 10,000-square-mile service territory. The co-op had more than 4,200 poles broken in the storm and has announced that repairs may take up to two weeks.
The counties impacted by the ongoing power outages comprise more than a third of the state's land mass and include some of the more remote areas of the state. On its Facebook page, one co-op noted that it will need to reset 10 poles to restore power to just one member.
For more information on storm damage in South Dakota, visit the South Dakota Rural Electric Association storm center at http://outages.sdrea.coop/. Information about outages within the specific cooperatives can be found on the cooperatives' web and Facebook pages.