Back in the 1950s folks were pretty sharp. That's why my small town has a power substation protected by a massive fifteen foot high dike between it and the local river. And it's no simple earthen berm, but a fully reinforced bulwark used as the foundation of a state highway. The river can get a little rambunctious so they prudently planned on keeping the power on even if the river should top it's previous high water mark during flooding.
What they didn't plan on is the water coming from the other direction.
Early Friday morning a freak storm dumped about four inches of rainfall on the area between midnight and 6 AM. That, unfortunately, followed a week of steady showers that had already saturated the ground. Around 5 AM three small creeks that run through town, and drain roughly 24 square miles of hill country above the valley, jumped their banks and went for a bit of a morning walkabout. The water came roaring through the streets, overwhelming the storm drains and flooding roughly half the town. Including that wonderfully well protected power substation, surrounded by a protective wall that would keep it safe and dry during even the worst river flooding. Except the wall only covered three sides and the water wasn't coming from the direction of the river. It was rollin' down Main Street and right into the "protected" dike area.
From all accounts the results were quite spectacular, particularly when six feet of water flowed into the massive transformers. Nothing big blew up, which we should probably be thankful for considering the largest ones are ten feet high. But a transformer the size of a hefty microwave can sure make a bang when it goes.
So the entire town has been without power since Friday morning. Our house didn't suffer any flood damage, but not having electricity has been a major hassle. Hopefully we'll have some juice later today, but for now I'm sponging off the WiFi at Denny's to explain why things might be a bit light for a while.
Upstate New York is supposed to be a bucolic enclave where nothing every really happens. Having two disasters in one year is seriously harshing our mellow.