Icy Storm Blamed For 14 Deaths, Massive Power Outages

Monday, December 10th 2007, 3:15 pm
By: News On 6

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) The first winter storm of the season that's dropped freezing drizzle across Oklahoma on Tuesday is now blamed for 14 deaths and the biggest power outage in state history.

Authorities say 13 people have in auto accidents on slick roadways and the state medical examiner's office says a 46-year-old transient died overnight in Oklahoma City from hypothermia.

Nearly a half million homes and businesses are without power with more than 215,000 customers with Oklahoma Gas & Electric. Another 200,000 customers of Public Service Company of Oklahoma are still without power this afternoon and thousands more customers of smaller utilities are without power as heavy ice snapped power poles and sent tree limbs crashing into transmission lines.

Utility officials said it could be a week or more before power is fully restored and PSO spokesman Stan Whiteford says the outages are as severe as he's ever seen.

National Weather Service meteorologist John Pike says some relief is expected tonight as warmer air continues pushing northward across the state.

Pike says the freezing line should be in Kansas on Wednesday.