Gardnerville, Ranchos without power for much of Tuesday

High winds knocked power out to half of Carson Valley's schools, several businesses and thousands of homes on Tuesday morning.

Winds peaked at 81 mph five miles southwest of Gardnerville in Sheridan Acres at 6:19 a.m.

Power lines along Highway 88 slapped together, sending sparks to the ground as winds battered them.

Electricity was out to Minden for about two hours starting shortly before 8 a.m. Douglas High School students were in the dark until just before 10 a.m.

Outages affected traffic lights at highways 395 and 88, Highway 395 and Riverview and Highway 88 and Waterloo Lane.

More than 7,400 NV Energy customers were without power most of the day after problems at two substations serving Minden and the Gardnerville Ranchos, according to NV Energy Spokesman Karl Walquist.

High winds knocked down multiple power poles south of Gardnerville, leaving residents of Gardnerville, the Gardnerville Ranchos, Fish Springs and Ruhenstroth without electricity.

Power was restored to parts of the Gardnerville Ranchos starting at about 4:20 p.m.

Walquist estimated that power would be restored to most people by at that time, but said those customers served by downed power poles might have to wait until the poles were replaced.

Power company workers were tied up all over western Nevada, as high winds struck in front of a powerful spring storm.

With the Internet and phones out, there was no way for district officials to contact parents, Assistant Superintendent Rich Alexander said Tuesday morning.

"We have no clear estimate on when power will be restored," he said. "We're keeping the students in school, where they will be safest. The cafeteria will make sandwiches, so they'll be fed."

"The schools are the safest place for them to be," he said. "The buses will run normally."

The forecast calls for scattered snow showers today with winds between 10 and 15 mph. The high temperature today is expected to hit the mid-40s. Precipitation remains in the forecast through Friday night.


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