25 outages in five days
Itasca-Mantrap linemen haven't had a good night's sleep in a week. From May 27-31, the company suffered 25 outages, mostly caused by high winds and trees toppling on lines. This outage caused a ditch fire on Highway 34 east of Park Rapids Tuesday. Member services manager Jared Echternach said tree limbs, lightning strikes, squirrels and weather-related causes are to blame. In that time span, 1,045 members were affected by sporadic outages throughout the region.