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To the Editor: Accident by one leaves many in cold and dark

To the Editor:

I would like to take this opportunity to give the highest praises to the Minnesota Power crews who spent over six hours in resolving a power issue in sub-zero temperatures. Not only did these employees put in a nearly full day, and then they endured -10 to -18 degrees for another six- plus hours.

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Thanks also to the Carlton Firefighters, Ambulance Crew, and Carlton County Sheriff Department who supported the repair efforts, and cordoned off the affected area allowing only the residents to enter or leave. We were offered a warm place to wait out the situation at the Scanlon Community Center as well.

This is the second time in five years that a Carlton County truck driver has taken a power pole down in freezing weather on the Halvorson Road. Each time the Carlton County driver has driven down the road with a fully extended box and broken off the power pole like a matchstick, leaving people without power.

This accident caused over 400 people the inconvenience and danger of not having a source of heat or lights for hours. We chose to stay in our home, fearing that pipes might burst as we were initially told it could take 24-48 hours to repair.The time and money that this ultimately costs you, the taxpayer, through higher costs of insurance should have been avoided. We were told that a situation such as this is covered by insurance which the county has.

Perhaps accidents such as these could easily be avoided by: 1) Proper training of the machinery involved, 2) Drivers being educated about the location of these wires and poles, and 3) Drivers staying alert and avoiding such incidents.

When such an act occurs, it might help keep these drivers on their toes if a policy was in effect that a driver receive some type of punishment for the act. Job performance should be reviewed.     

Dissatisfied with Carlton County plow driver,

Jim Boyd

Twin Lakes Township resident