Buildup of ice causes blackoutA blackout in north and east Dickinson on Sunday delayed the opening of Prairie Hills Mall and caused a brief shutdown for a few businesses along Highway 22 and Interstate 94.
By: Katherine Grandstrand, The Dickinson Press
A blackout in north and east Dickinson on Sunday delayed the opening of Prairie Hills Mall and caused a brief shutdown for a few businesses along Highway 22 and Interstate 94.
The blackout was caused by a break in transmission lines south of town, Montana-Dakota Utilities Spokesman Tony Spilde said.
“It was weather-related,” he said. “We had a heavy buildup of ice on some of the transmission lines south of town from Friday’s storm. With the high winds those lines started to sway a bit and that caused an arm on one of the power poles to break.”
Power, which flickered in and out before going out completely at 11:30 a.m., was back up at about 12:30 p.m. for some of the affected customers, and 1:40 p.m. for the rest, Spilde said.
Those affected were in the mall area, around Highway 22 and Interstate 94, and from south of the interstate to just north of Villard Street between Fourth and 22nd avenues, Spilde said.
About 3,100 customers in the Dickinson area were affected, he said.
DJ’s Tesoro had to shut down for about half an hour after the power went out, co-owner Tim Lantz said.
“It more certainly affected the sales,” he said. “We couldn’t pump fuel and we weren’t able to make coffee or have our Hot Stuff ovens running to make food, so we ended up shutting down those departments.”
The Internet also shut off, so the store was unable to process credit-card or check transactions, Lantz said. The registers can run for 15 to 20 minutes on battery power.
“At that point we need to shut down and lock the door,” he said. “Just for the customers’ safety we don’t allow people in the store.”
It seemed like as soon as the store was shut down that the power came back on, Lantz said.
Walmart was not affected, Spokeswoman Kayla Whaling said from the company’s headquarters in Bentonville, Ark.
For information about surviving a power outage, visit