Parts of northwest Albany left in the dark - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Parts of northwest Albany left in the dark

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January 17, 2005

Albany - Construction workers, digging near North Westover Boulevard, accidentally cut a major power line leaving businesses and residents in the area without power for hours.

Doctors used flashlights to navigate the halls of Albany Orthopedic Center on Meredyth Drive Monday morning. "The doctors are in the back seeing patients with flashlights in the exam rooms," said Business Administrator Beth Culpepper.

Dozens of businesses and residents were surprised when the lights went out around 8:30AM. None more than Beth Culpepper who had just stepped into an elevator at the doctor's office. "It just stopped and jolted and lights went out. I thought 'Someone is playing a joke on me.' But then, it stayed that way for quite a while."

Culpepper used the emergency phone to call for help. "I called one of the girls and said 'You're not going to believe this, but I'm in the elevator.'" She sat and waited for 45 minutes until an elevator repair man came and help her out.

About 500 yards from the doctor's office sat the source of the problem. Construction workers digging near Bruno's Grocery store cut power and phone lines.

"We were in the middle of baking for the day," said Heavenly Ham owner Kathy Burke. Work at Heavenly Ham came to a standstill. "We couldn't do soup, cookies, breads."

Georgia Power employees were able to restore power to a few businesses and residences at a time. With lunch hour nearing, the power finally came back on at Heavenly Ham. All but a few businesses had power again by 1:00PM.

posted at 3:06PM by kathryn.murchison@walb.com

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