Thousands of cold, dark homes without power in Kitsap County



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Posted on November 23, 2010 at 6:33 PM

Updated Wednesday, Nov 24 at 12:22 AM

KITSAP COUNTY, Wash. -- It was expected to be a very cold, dark Tuesday night for tens of thousands across Puget Sound.

As of Tuesday at 10:30 p.m., Puget Sound Energy reported 39,000 customers without power. The vast majority of those were in Kitsap County. Most of the others were on Vashon Island and in the Federal Way-Dash Point area.

Power crews are optimistic they will be able to restore power to most homes by Wednesday, but Kitsap County authorities said it could be until Friday when all power is fully restored. Icy roads and storm debris combined to make it difficult for PSE crews to get to trouble spots.

"It's like an ice box in the house," said Kate Austin, who lives in the Sunnyslope area near Port Orchard.

Austin's neighborhood was one of the hardest hit in the county Monday and early Tuesday morning. Downed trees and power lines litter the front and backyards of her neighbors.

“I just heard a big old, 'POP!' And then the whole house just disintegrated before my eyes,” said Billy Shaw who had a tree crash through the middle of his Kitsap County home late Monday night.

Shaw's brother had to go to the hospital after he was trapped beneath the tree.

"The storm here was a doozy," said Shaw.

The situation was so dire that volunteers were going door-to-door to bring people to Presidents Hall at the county fairgrounds, which is serving as a temporary shelter.