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Downtown Businesses Respond To Power Outage

January 25, 2013, 4:52 PM by Shawn Neisteadt

Downtown Businesses Respond To Power Outage

An underground transformer fire caused several businesses to lose power throughout downtown Sioux Falls Friday.  While most had power before opening their doors for the day, others have been left in the dark.

In the restaurant business, temperature is everything.  So when the power went out, those who work at the Phillips Avenue Diner went into emergency mode. Losing customers is bad enough; losing the product isn't an option.

"We're trying to see if we can get some refrigerated and frozen trucks down here to save product.  We're just doing what we can to correct the problem," Phillips Avenue Diner General Manager Mark Gillespie said.

But one odd twist is that the weather could be in the diner's favor.  It is still plenty cold outside which could be used to freeze some of the food. But Gillespie says knowing exactly how to respond is difficult, because crews have such a big chore and so many questions are still unanswered. 

"They don't really have a time frame, so I don't know if this is the end of the day, the end of the weekend, I don't know.  I'm kind of in the dark as well," Gillespie said.

Gillespie and others didn't learn the severity of the outage until late Friday morning.  Now he just hopes the power comes back on because without it, his business is at a stand still.

"Power is everything.  We can't do anything without power.  All we can do is be proactive and hopefully it's not too bad of a loss," Gillespie said.

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