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Metro Newsroom

183,000 Remain Without Power, More Utility Crews Arriving To Aid In Recovery

Thursday January 29, 2009

Updated at 10: 02 a.m. on Thursday, January 29
See also: See list of metro facilities that will be open Thursday and Friday .

“We are making steady progress” Mayor Abramson says

Power was restored to more than 20,000 homes and business overnight, but 183,000 LG&E customers still remain without electricity and 8,900 power lines remain down, Mayor Jerry Abramson said today.

Additional utility crews are arriving in Louisville today and by evening 1,800 people will be working to restore power, said LG&E senior vice president Chris Hermann.

“We’re making steady progress, but this storm was so broad and so destructive that it will take time to thaw out and to rebuild the power network,” Abramson said. “With another cold night expected today, I strongly urge citizens to use the shelters as needed and to check on friends and neighbors.”

City starting to see fires, carbon monoxide poisoning

Abramson said the city is beginning to see fires and health problems caused by people attempting to heat their homes. Three fires in St. Matthews overnight were caused by fireplaces that apparently hadn’t been checked for debris.

“If you are going to burn a fireplace, make sure you have someone check the chimney first,” said Louisville Fire Chief Gregory Frederick. “It could save your life.”

No deaths have been attributed to the cold, however Emergency Medical Services responded overnight to five reports of carbon monoxide poisoning. EMS Director Dr. Neal Richmond said they were likely caused by people using generators and other devices. He reminded people to make sure any heating sources, especially generators, are properly ventilated.

Red Cross Shelters houses 189 overnight

The Red Cross shelter at Walnut Street Baptist Church in Old Louisville had 189 residents last night. Red Cross has provided shelters to 1,300 people in the Louisville Metro area, which includes Southern Indiana.

The Red Cross is prepared to open more shelters, if needed, but Walnut Street can hold 300 people.

YMCA opens facilities for showers

The YMCA of Louisville has opened its facilities for people who wish to take showers. There is no charge. The Y has several branches across the city. Call the Y to determine the nearest location. The Mary T. Meagher pool in Crescent Hill is also open, free of charge, for people wishing to shower.

Major roads cleared

Most major roads have been cleared of snow, though side and neighborhood streets remain hazardous. Public Works Director Ted Pullen said crews will continue spreading salt and plowing snow as needed, but they are now focusing their attention on removing trees and limbs that block streets across the city.

The crews this weekend will also focus their attention on school routes, to ensure that those roads and streets are ready to handle buses Monday morning.

Replacement food stamps

People can apply for replacement food stamps at Neighborhood Place locations across the city.

Airport operating on normal schedule; few delays

The airport is open and operating as normal, with only one flight cancellation this morning. Passengers should call their airline prior to departing for the airport to determine if their flight is operating as scheduled. Passengers may also access and click on flight status.

Frozen pipes a growing concern

The Louisville Water Co. is warning people that frozen and burst pipes could become a problem for homes without power. Water Co. President Greg Heitzman says people without power should either turn on their water to a pencil-sized trickle to keep them from freezing – or shut off the main water valve to the house.

“It’s better to be safe than to have a house-full of water,” he said.

Sledding in city parks dangerous

Metro Parks is strongly discouraging any recreational use of our parks, including sledding hills, because of the dangers posed by falling trees, hanging limbs, icy conditions and downed power lines. Metro Parks crews are currently focusing their efforts on clearing city streets, rather than opening parks

Shelters offer food, cots

Several other shelters are operating in addition to the Red Cross shelter at Walnut Street Baptist.

Healing Place – Men's Shelter, 1020 W Market St. 585-4848

Women's Shelter, 1607 W Broadway 568-6680

· must be over 18

· must be sober

· no family accommodations

· No one turned away, but beds fill quickly. Once beds fill, they have mats and chairs

Salvation Army831 S Brook St., 625-1170

· can accommodate all homeless

· includes families - although man in family may not be able to stay with rest of family

Wayside – Men’s Shelter, 432 E Jefferson, 584-3711 (answered 24/7 - call for all info)

Metro Facilities Open

Below is a list of facilities that are open to the public and their operating hours. Some may be added later in the week as power is restored.

Libraries open Thursday evening until 8 or 9 p.m.; until 5 p.m. Friday:

Main 301 York St.


Bon Air 2816 Del Rio Place


Crescent Hill 2762 Frankfort Ave.


Fern Creek 6768 Bardstown Rd.


Iroquois 601 W. Woodlawn Ave.


Jeffersontown 10635 Watterson Trail


Middletown 200 N. Juneau Dr.


Okolona 7709 Preston Hwy.


Portland 3306 Northwestern Pkwy.


Shawnee 3912 W. Broadway


Shively 3920 Dixie Hwy.


Western 604 S. 10th St.


Westport 8100 Westport Road

(closed Fri.)

Neighborhood Places open through 5 p.m. weekdays:

Ujima 3610 Bohne Ave. 485-6710

Urban Govt. Center 810 Barret Ave. 574-6638

South Central 4255 Hazelwood Ave. 584-7130

Cane Run 3410 Lees Ln. 485-6810

Bridges at L& N 908 W. Broadway 595-4575

Community Centers open as listed:

Baxter 1125 Cedar Court

10 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Cyril Allgeier Community Center 4101 Cadillac Court

10 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Beechmont Community Center 205 West Wellington Road

10 a.m. to 7 p.m.

California Community Center 1600 West St. Catherine St.

10 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Dumeyer Community Center 1644 Squires Dr.

10 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Flaget Senior Center 4425 Greenwood Ave.

9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Mary T. Meagher Aquatic Center 201 Reservoir Road

5 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Parkhill Community Center 1703 South 13th St.

10 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Portland 640 N 27th St

10 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Presbyterian. 701 S. Hancock Street

10 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Shawnee Community Center 607 South 37th St.

10 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Wilderness Road Senior Center 8111 Blue Lick Rd.

9 a.m. to 5 p.m.