Hundreds stranded without heat or power in Arizona town amid winter storm

Hundreds of people were left without heat and power in an Arizona town on Friday following a winter storm, forcing local leaders to declare a state of emergency.

Cynthia Seelhammer, Tusayan’s town manager, told The Hill in an email Saturday that power for the town’s approximately 500 residents and 500 tourists had returned as of about 2 a.m. 

She said roads in the town, located just south of the Grand Canyon, are now “passable but icy.”

Mayor Craig Sanderson told The Hill in an email that the Tusayan and the Grand Canyon’s South Rim were “doing better this morning.”

He said that Arizona Public Service worked nonstop for 24 hours to restore the electricity. 

“It is great to have power back as the temperature was 40 yesterday but plummeted to 6 below zero this morning,” Sanderson added. 

Tusayan’s town council declared a state of emergency Friday morning due to the lack of power and almost two feet of snow that made roads unusable, according to Reuters

Sanderson told The Hill that the emergency declaration was “a proactive move to push for reallocation of resources to get Highway 64 in usable condition and to set up a shelter for people to stay warm.”

He added that he expects conditions to be mostly back to normal by the end of the day on Saturday.

The mayor previously told Reuters that more than 1,000 people were stranded in the area along state Route 64 as of Friday evening.

He said Saturday that the road is “still snow packed and icy” but that it is usable. 

Grand Canyon National Park wrote on Twitter on Friday evening that Tusayan and Grand Canyon Village were without power but wrote early Saturday that power at Grand Canyon Village had been restored. 

The Arizona Department of Transportation warned in a Saturday tweet about “icy, wintery conditions” in the northern part of the state and advised people to “consider postponing travel.” 

Updated: 1 p.m.

Tags Arizona Grand Canyon

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