Warming stations open after store closes

Kirk Boxleitner kboxleitner@ptleader.com
Posted 1/17/17

When power went out in Port Ludlow Jan. 11, Jefferson County Public Utility District (PUD) began putting warming stations into place to help customers get out of the cold.

Kevin Streett, assistant …

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Warming stations open after store closes

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When power went out in Port Ludlow Jan. 11, Jefferson County Public Utility District (PUD) began putting warming stations into place to help customers get out of the cold.

Kevin Streett, assistant general manager of the PUD, contacted the Chimacum School District at about 11 a.m. to ask if it could set aside some of its facilities as a warming station.

The district agreed to host a warming station from 1 to 6 p.m., with the option to remain open all night if needed, until 9 a.m. the next day.

“At that point, [the county’s Emergency Operations Center] would have coordinated bringing in food and various supplies,” Streett said. “Art Clarke [with the school district] was very cooperative. He and I coordinated times and a place to have people go, if they chose to. The school had signs and warm coffee, tea and water available. The public library in Port Hadlock was also open, and we referred people to there as well.”

Following a 911 call by a passerby who saw the flames, Port Ludlow Fire & Rescue had extinguished the initial substation fire by 8:41 a.m. and remained on the scene until PUD workers arrived.

Port Ludlow residents remained calm, despite warnings by the PUD that the outage could last well into the night. Temperatures have been dipping into the 20s this month throughout Jefferson County.

Tina Korloch, store manager for the Port Ludlow Village Market, was surprised to see her power restored as early as 2 p.m.

“We had a long line of people waiting for us to reopen, because they were still without power and needed to stock up on supplies,” Korloch said.

The Port Ludlow Village Market experiences its peak customer traffic from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m., so the power outage still hit the store hard, but it was able to avoid further losses because outside temperatures were so cold that none of its refrigerated or frozen items warmed up.

“We still closed up shop because of health guidelines, but because no one was going into those coolers, everything inside was kept cold,” Korloch said. “We did lose a lot of money from our regular lunch customers. No matter how cold it gets, we always have landscapers and construction workers come by.”

Keppie Keplinger, public information officer for Port Ludlow Fire & Rescue, said that other than the call for help putting out the fire, the only calls it had that day had to do with several smoke alarms that couldn’t be turned off.

See jeffpud.org for tips out how to prepare for an outage.

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