WEATHER

How to make sure you weather the storm and cleanup safely

Sep 9, 2020, 10:52 AM
Photo: Jed Boal

SALT LAKE CITY — Cleanup begins across northern Utah, a day after a storm with wild winds uprooted trees, sent trampolines sailing and even tipped over tractor-trailers on the interstates. But officials in multiple cities are warning residents to make sure they perform their storm cleanup safely. 

Safe storm cleanup: watch for downed power lines

Rocky Mountain Power spokesman Spencer Hall recommended residents wait until the wind event finishes completely before starting any storm cleanup, for a number of reasons. 

“With some of the street lights out, there are dangerous traffic conditions,” he said Tuesday on KSL NewsRadio’s Live Mic with Lee Lonsberry. 

In a news conference with Salt Lake County officials on Tuesday, Hall also pointed out you may not be able to tell if a downed power line is “live.” Additionally, debris could cover up a downed line, which means you can’t tell it’s there until too late. He urged residents to let utility workers make the rounds first. 

“We have hundreds if not thousands of crew members working to restore power,” Hall said. 

Wait until later to get started

Ogden city officials urged residents to take care and maybe wait until Wednesday or Thursday to address downed branches and trees. 

“This might be the most dangerous time to do your cleanup,” Ogden Police Lt. Brian Eynon told KSL TV. “You’re out there with a chainsaw, the winds kick up again, and weak trees that have already lost limbs can come down on you.” 

Wind gusts should gradually subside during the day on Wednesday, but forecasters expected occasional gusts throughout the day, complicating storm cleanup. 

“The temptation is to try to get out and to try to help and to clear things out, and it’s probably one of the most dangerous things that we can be doing right now,” said KSL Chief Meteorologist Kevin Eubank. “It’s going to take a day or two before we can safely get out, and then we’ll need everyone to help clean this up. It is significant tree damage across the area, and property damage associated with that.” 

Use common sense with heating, lighting solutions  

Lower temperatures combined with widespread power outages mean many Utahns are using alternative sources to heat their homes. But with that comes a risk for carbon monoxide exposure. 

“You want to be very mindful of the fact that you can’t smell carbon monoxide. And it can take just a little, small heater that has fuel in it, like kerosene and gasoline,” said Eynon. 

Gas generators can also pose a carbon monoxide threat if not properly vented, Eynon said. 

While candles may also provide light and warmth during a power outage, Eynon urged residents not to leave them unattended, to prevent fires. 

Salt Lake County offered four different warming centers for residents who need power for medical devices or other concerns. 

Today’s Top Stories

Weather

snow on a mountain in utah pictured falling on a road...
Adam Small

Latest snow on Utah roads prompts police to encourage safe driving

As snow falls in Utah, police are urging drivers to maintain safe distances and practice caution regardless of how much snow falls this season.
1 day ago
major storm...
Samantha Beech and Keith Allen, CNN

Thousands of US flights delayed Sunday by major storm system

A major storm across parts of the United States prompts the three major airports servicing New York City to urge passengers to arrive early for flights
2 days ago
winter storm...
Devin Oldroyd

UDOT warns winter storm bringing roadway impacts

The Utah Department of Transportation is warning drivers that an upcoming winter storm will impact the road from 6 am Monday to noon Tuesday.
2 days ago
Dry lakebed...
Kira Hoffelmeyer

Lawsuit looms over tiny fish in drought-stricken West

RENO, Nev. (AP) — Conservationists have notified U.S. wildlife officials that they will sue over delayed decisions related to protections for two rare fish species that are threatened by groundwater pumping in the drought-stricken West. The Center for Biological Diversity sent a formal notice of intent to sue the Fish and Wildlife Service last week […]
6 days ago
cold roads made for slick conditions on Utah's roads...
Becky Bruce

If the small snowstorm took you by surprise, you’re not alone

Turns out, Utah weather can be unusually difficult to predict. So why did we end up with a surprise snowstorm? Lake-effect snow.
6 days ago
sundance mountain resort will open a week early...
Kira Hoffelmeyer

Sundance Mountain Resort to open seven days early

SUNDANCE, Utah — Sundance Mountain Resort is opening one week ahead of schedule. The resort announced via email this morning that it expects to open on Dec. 3 because of all the snow it’s gotten, instead of its planned Dec. 9 opening. Sundance says it’s the earliest opening day they’ve had in a decade.  “We […]
6 days ago

Sponsored Articles

Happy joyful smiling casual satisfied woman learning and communicates in sign language online using...
Sorenson

The best tools for Deaf and hard-of-hearing workplace success

Here are some of the best resources to make your workplace work better for Deaf and hard-of-hearing employees.
Team supporters celebrating at a tailgate party...
Macey's

8 Delicious Tailgate Foods That Require Zero Prep Work

In a hurry? These 8 tailgate foods take zero prep work, so you can fuel up and get back to what matters most: getting hyped for your favorite
christmas decorations candles in glass jars with fir on a old wooden table...
Western Nut Company

12 Mason Jar Gift Ideas for the 12 Days of Christmas [with recipes!]

There are so many clever mason jar gift ideas to give something thoughtful to your neighbors or friends. Read our 12 ideas to make your own!
wide shot of Bear Lake with a person on a stand up paddle board...

Pack your bags! Extended stays at Bear Lake await you

Work from here! Read our tips to prepare for your extended stay, whether at Bear Lake or somewhere else nearby.
young boy with hearing aid...
Sorenson

Accommodations for students who are deaf and hard of hearing

These different types of accommodations for students who are deaf and hard of hearing can help them succeed in school.
Young woman receiving laser treatment...
Form Derm Spa

How facial plastic surgery and skincare are joining forces

Facial plastic surgery is not only about looking good but about feeling good too. The medical team at Form Spa are trained to help you reach your aesthetic outcomes through surgery and through skincare and dermatology, too.
How to make sure you weather the storm and cleanup safely