Valle Vista, Hualapai Mountain communities suffer 12-hour blackout

KINGMAN – Power went on the blink for 2,435 customers of Mohave Electric Co-op starting around 2 p.m. Tuesday and lasting until 3:15 a.m. Wednesday, a company official said.

Rick Campos, manager of energy and operations for Mohave Electric, said the 13-hour power outage was caused by the Hualapai substation, where at least five transmission poles were blown down by wind from Tuesday’s storm.

The monsoon season brings microbursts of winds that are like a “small tornado,” sheering the poles at 12 to 14 feet, Campos said.

“It was a long one,” he said of the outage. “We had to replace a number of poles and wires due to the storm. Not only our crews, but we had two contractor crews to keep the outage as short as possible.”

John Daniels was among about 900 residents of Valle Vista who were affected by the loss of electricity. He was also without water when his well pumps went off.

“We have a lot of people out here on CPAPs (breathing machine). It seems like 13 hours is a long time to establish power,” Daniels said.

Campos said it’s important for Mohave Electric customers to update their home phone numbers to receive automated alerts from the company and to help with reporting outages.

The power outage extended to the Hualapai Mountains and east along Interstate 40 to U.S. Highway 93, including Peach Springs, Hackberry and the truck stops.