Major Power Outage To Leave Much of Memphis 'Out for a Few Days'

A major power outage caused by Winter Storm Landon is likely to leave Memphis out of power for a few days, after intense blizzards downed power cables and trees in the area.

According to PowerOutrage.US, out of 422,678 customers served in Shelby County, where the city is based, some 125,333 of them are without power as of early Friday morning. That's around 30 percent of all customers in the county that are affected.

The city's mayor, Jim Strickland, declared a state of emergency across the city around 4 p.m. on Thursday.

Much of the rest of Tennessee is functioning normally, with minimal outages. Only Fayette, Haywood and Crockett counties had 10 percent of their customers with outages. The rest of the counties had very few outages.

Shelby County's electricity is solely supplied by an electricity utility owned by the city of Memphis.

Memphis Light, Gas and Water (MLGW) said that 50 teams are working non-stop to restore the power, but it could take several days due to the continuing winter weather and poor road conditions. An ice storm warning that the National Weather Service issued early Thursday for parts of Tennessee expired at midnight that evening.

"It is not going to be restored quickly... ," MLGW spokeswoman Gale Jones Carson told a press conference on Thursday afternoon, according to The Commercial Appeal.

At a news conference later that day, Jones Carson said it was "very difficult" to say when the outages would peak, the local outlet reported.

"We really don't know," she said. "We're hoping by Sunday that things will be better... It's not going to be a quick restoration process. Our customers are going to be out for a few days."

She said that both MLGW and Memphis public works are looking to bring in crews outside the county to help make repairs to restore power as quickly as possible. Jones Carlson said MLGW would be adding 14 outside contracting crews by 7 a.m. on Friday, making 50 crews on the job in total.

Newsweek has contacted MLGW for comment

Winter Storm Landon also caused outages in Arkansas, Kentucky, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Texas, according to PowerOutage.US.

The multi-day storm reaped havoc through earlier this week, beginning on Tuesday morning with it winding down on Friday. The fast-moving blizzards brought disruptive snow and ice to much of central U.S., before moving eastward over Texas and Oklahoma and then to the Northeast, as far east as New England and the New York tri-state area.

Snowfall of six to 12 inches fell over parts of the Southern Rockies and Central Plains to Midwest by Thursday morning.

Winter Storm Landon came nearly a year after a huge winter storm devastated Texas' power grid, causing hundreds of deaths in the southern state.

Memphis snow storm
Edward Caldwell works to clear a downed tree at his moms house on February 3, 2022 in Memphis, Tennessee. A major power outage caused by Winter Storm Landon is likely to leave Memphis out of power for a few days after intense blizzards downed power cables and trees in the area. Brad Vest/Getty