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BYU-Idaho Offers Shelter During Power Outage

The upper valley woke this morning to record cold temperatures and a massive power outage. The power outage happened a little after 5:30 this morning.

More than 14,000 Rocky Mountain Power customers were affected in Ashton, St. Anthony, Sugar City, Rexburg and Teton.

Record cold temperatures across the upper valley caused several school districts to close for the day.

Bringham Young University-Idaho postponed classes this morning because of the power outage.

“When something like that happens, our first priority is student safety,” said BYU communications manager Marc Stevens.

The school notified students about postponed classes, using every communication method available.

“We have several communication channels we use. There’s a phone call system, students can sign up for text messages, we used the university website and we put up banners, and our Facebook page and our campus radio station had updates as well,” said Stevens.

In those messages came updated class schedules and what to do when a power outage happens on the coldest day of the year.

“One of those messages was if you’re home and if it’s warm, stay there. If that was not the case and you needed a warm place to go, we had the BYU-Idaho Center,” said Stevens.

The 15,000-seat auditorium was warm and it was used for the first time as a shelter for students and the general public.

“Today was pretty simple as those things go. Even at that, there were a number of steps that kicked in to make sure needs were met and students were communicated with,” said Stevens.

Rocky Mountain Power says the outage was caused by a downed power line.

All power was restored to customers by 11:00 a.m.

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