HOCKING COUNTY, Ohio (WSYX) — Thousands of people in Hocking County are still waiting for the lights to come on after last week’s massive storm that dumped snow and ice.
“Two in the afternoon is when the power went out on Thursday,” said Jack Pine, who owns a hand blowing glass business in Hocking Hills, and still waits for heat and power.
“It’s been cold and very dark, said Pine. “It’s been a little tough.”
The outage forced the well-known tourist attraction to close its store gallery, cancel classes, and send workers home until the power returned.
Pine’s home is also in the dark.
“We were buckled down,“ said Pine. “It was a doozy of a storm. We had no idea how bad it was going to be for Hocking County.”
Dozens of power crews are now in Hocking Hills to fix power lines and restore electricity for thousands, who remain in the dark.
South Central Power Company hopes to have 95% of its customers back online by Tuesday. The company says it’s tripled the staffing size of workers assigned to get the lights back on.
South Central Power says it could be mid-week before the power is returned to rural and remote parts of Hocking County.
“There’s millions of trees, these trees get a little bit of weight from the ice, they fall into the roads, and the right of way of utilities,” said Rick Lemonds, South Central Power President and CEO. “there is just so much damage, the storm has been catastrophic."
Pine is now using a generator to get power inside his store gallery so he can welcome customers.
He says even when the electricity returns it will be two days before his furnaces used to melt glass are back up to their regular 2,000 degrees and fully operational.
“We’ve never seen anything like this in Hocking County, ever,” said Pine.