Updated: Aug. 11, 10:25 a.m.
A thunderstorm that swept across the region Thursday night temporarily knocked out power for thousands of residences across Northwest Montana.
Wendy Ostrom Price, public relations officer with Flathead Electric Cooperative, said all of the organization’s crews have been dispatched to restore power and repair damaged lines from falling trees and branches.
“It’s all hands on deck. We began dispatching everyone last evening and have not stopped,” she said.
Outages were originally reported across the entire service area, from Libby to Essex and the Swan Valley and everywhere in between, Ostrom Price said.
As of Friday morning, more than 2,700 members were still without power, primarily in the Hungry Horse area. Parts of Columbia Falls and West Glacier are also without power.
Glacier National Park officials reported that the power was out on the west side but it was restored by 10:30 a.m.
She was unable to estimate when power will be fully restored.
“They’re working around the clock,” Ostrom Price said.
The storm that blew through the valley brought heavy winds and several lightning strikes. Fire crews began responding to reported flames late Thursday night, including a 50-acre blaze in Glacier National Park.
The region is experiencing extreme fire danger and stage II restrictions are in effect, meaning campfires and barbecues are prohibited, along with other preventative measures.