Windstorm Preparations

Windstorm preparations

A long line into the sewer district. There is another line visible further to the east. Click to enlarge

 
In preparation for the approaching storm, scenes like these were repeated all along the Wasatch Front. There were temporary waste collection sites at LDS Church stake centers and at other locations. After helping in our ward, Dan and I drove through several streets in central Kaysville and found hundreds of people and dozens of trailers being loaded. It was an impressive sight.

Windstorm preparations

Follow a laden trailer if you don't know where to go

Windstorm preparations

Because men were driving the pickups, directions were provided without having to ask

Windstorm preparations

Though the line was long we didn't have to wait long

Windstorm preparations

Unloading

Windstorm preparations

Even minivans were drafted into service

Windstorm preparations

The line as we drove for the exit

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Kaysville Windstorm Part 2

Kaysville windstorm preparations

Kaysville 14th ward members turned out in force to clean up


It is not often that the Governor warns the citizens of Utah about the weather. But he did just that Saturday night when he urged residents along the northern Wasatch Front to prepare for another windstorm, forecast to begin at 5pm Sunday.

After Thursday’s windstorm, most residents have not had time to completely clean up.

In preparation, our stake president instructed wards to have their priesthood organize to remove branches and other debris that could become airborne in the approaching high winds. Accordingly, in our ward at church this morning the priesthood were asked to assemble in work clothes at 1pm. There was no asking for volunteers, it was just assumed that all able-bodied men would respond — which we did.

We collected all the green waste and took it to the Central Davis Sewer District where it will be converted to ground wood waste and mixed with biosolids, then composted and sold to the general public. It was quite the operation (follow the link for photographs), with armadas of pickups and trailers.

Kaysville windstorm preparations

There were large tree trunks to deal with as well as branches

Kaysville windstorm preparations

Chains saws were the weapon of choice

Kaysville windstorm preparations

Sister Blair handed out hot chocolate

 
Dan and I, after we had finished within our ward boundaries, drove to my daughter’s home for a branch meeting. There we removed part of a tree that was entangled in the power line to her home. The power is still out from Thursday’s winds. When we had finished cutting down the branches we asked Sarah’s ward members if they would take away the debris and they immediately dispatched ten men to her backyard.

Kaysville windstorm preparations

With the power still off it was a good time to clear away the branches that were stressing the power lines

Kaysville windstorm preparations

Dan did most of the work under my skilled supervision

Kaysville windstorm preparations

Sarah's ward had an efficient operation in progress

Kaysville windstorm preparations

Ever wondered what was inside those Mormon steeples? Nothing, at least now there isn't

Kaysville windstorm preparations

Mmm, I was wondering where that chair of ours ended up

 
Normally, Mormons view a Sunday as the sabbath day, a day to be kept holy. Occasionally, and this is the first time for me, members have to work together on a Sunday to secure their communities.

Update

The high wind warning was cancelled but some gusts did hit 40 miles per hour.
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Davis County Windstorm Cleanup

Davis County windstorm cleanup

Working on the roof Saturday with my four sons

 
Yesterday we only had two hours before dark on Steven’s roof. After helping pull out two tree stumps at our neighbor’s homes, we headed back to Layton to finish the repairs to the roof. We nailed the last shingle by 4pm.
 
Davis County windstorm cleanup

Steven with his roof, good as new. The new shingles don't quite match but they will keep the rain out

 
Earlier in the day it seemed like the whole of Davis County was on the move. While driving to Layton we saw truck after truck filled with broken tree limbs. The line to the landfill, or rather the Green Waste Recycling Facility, was quite long.
 
Davis County windstorm cleanup

A common sight all day along Highway 89

Davis County windstorm cleanup

Notice the truck on the left carrying what looks like power cables, no doubt needed for repairs

Davis County windstorm cleanup

Several trucks headed for the Green Waste Recycling Facility

Davis County windstorm cleanup

As we headed towards the landfill there was a convoy of vehicles leaving, having shed their loads

Davis County windstorm cleanup

A long line at the landfill entrance

Mark Reporting from Bountiful

Our power was out from 8am until 2am the next morning. Luckily the temperature was in the low 30s during the day and low 20s at night. We have experienced other East winds when it was below zero. I spent much of the day [Thursday] on my ham radio with emergency responders in the area, sharing information and keeping up to date on what was happening.

It was a good opportunity to test out emergency preparedness plans / equipment. Serious enough to warrant their use, but not life threatening. The Davis County Amateur Radio Emergency Service was the main communication system for cities, police departments, hospitals and other emergency responders. These are hobbyists volunteering their equipment and skills and they did a fantastic job. At one point one of the Centerville Emergency Communications Center responders was heard on the radio saying:

A big spruce fell on a neighbor’s house about 20 minutes ago. The whole neighborhood is there cutting it up right now. I love this community. In some places in this country, we would still be waiting for FEMA!

Davis County windstorm cleanup

Connie surveying the damage in Bountiful

Davis County windstorm cleanup

A dead tree in the cemetery

Davis County windstorm cleanup

This tree was snapped off at the truck


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Layton and Farmington Windstorm Cleanup

Layton windstorm repairs

My sons repairing the wind damage to Steven's home. He's the dude wearing sunglasses in December

 
Other cities besides Kaysville had windstorm damage. Over in Layton my son Steven had his brothers helping to replace lost shingles. I stayed on the ground in a support role, fetching tools, bringing hot chocolate that Adelaide made, and picking up all the broken shingles scattered all over the lot.

My grandson Bryson helped by pointing with his stick to each piece of shingle and saying, “That one there, this one there, Grandpa.” Over in Farmington, my daughter Sarah, snapped some photographs of Heritage Park from the Frontage Road. She was driving past and was struck at the sight of all those tarps.

Layton windstorm repairs

From left: Paul, Steven, Dan, Jake


Layton windstorm cleanup

Bryson supervises the cleanup. Grandpa you missed one!


Farmington windstorm cleanup

Looking over Heritage Park at all the tarps


Farmington windstorm cleanup

It looks like almost every house lost shingles


Rachel, my daughter-in-law, was driving back from town and as she approached her home she saw a woman and children picking up the broken shingles around the house. She was so embarrassed that she drove right past. She waited until they were gone before going back home. Later when she was telling me her story she said, “I wonder if they picked up the back yard as well?”

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Kaysville Windstorm Damage Continued

Here are some more photographs of the hurricane force winds (up to 102 mph) that struck northern Utah today. My previous post showed damage to buildings, fences, and trees. Dan and Jake braved the weather and took photographs of some of the damage in Kaysville. The video shows the force of the wind.

See: How to heat your home when the power is out.

Signs of Windy Weather

Kaysville windstorm upside down sign

The wind must have seemed like hell in Ogden


 
Kaysville windstorm bent sign

Kaysville windstorm missing sign

Where is the missing sign?...


 
Kaysville windstorm found sign

...right here down the street


 

Vehicle Trouble

Kaysville windstorm skewed traffic lights

Kaysville windstorm blown out SUV window

Kaysville windstorm bent bonnet

Kaysville semi rollover

Not in My Backyard

Kaysville windstorm trampoline

Kaysville windstorm backyard

This is my backyard. This morning Dan had to search for my garbage can and rescue my barbeque from blowing away. The shingles on the ground belong to someone else. Are you missing any?


 

The Force of The Wind

When Dan was shooting the video he held the camera as steady as he could. The wind was too strong and once knocked him back a few steps (at the 11 second mark) but he kept his balance.

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Kaysville Windstorm Damage

Today hurricane force winds caused much damage in Utah. As many as 50,000 customers were without power at one point. The National Weather Service recorded gusts of 102 mph in Centerville. Dan and Jake braved the high winds and took photographs of some of the damage in Kaysville.

See: How to heat your home when the power is out.

Lost Siding and Shingles

Kaysville windstorm lost siding

Kaysville windstorm more lost siding

Kaysville windstorm lost shingles

Kaysville windstorm more lost shingles
 

Downed Fences

Kaysville windstorm downed fence

Kaysville windstorm more downed fence

This fence is (was?) my neighbor's


 

Downed Trees

Kaysville windstorm downed tree

Kaysville windstorm downed tree

Kaysville windstorm downed tree

Kaysville windstorm downed tree

Kaysville windstorm downed tree

This is (was?) my daughter's tree


 

Downed Fences by Downed Trees

Kaysville windstorm downed fence by tree

Kaysville windstorm downed fence by tree

Kaysville windstorm downed fence by tree

This is my next door neighbor's tree. It took out his fence and bent our corner post


Kaysville windstorm downed fence by tree cleanup

By the time I got home the tree had been removed from the road



Kaysville windstorm bent post cleanup

This evening my son Paul fixed the post with his come-a-long. We will fix the rest later


 
I have a few more photographs to show in my next post.
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Big Kaysville Snowflakes

Big snowflakes
It is 4:30pm in Kaysville and I have never seen such big snowflakes. According to the forecast, several inches of snow have fallen in the Northern Mountains, and there’s been plenty of snow in the lower elevations as well — I can vouch for that.
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Kaysville City Conservation Charge

Conservation Charge

History

Over eight months ago I wrote about the city conservation charge for electricity that was not detailed on resident’s utilities service bills. At the invitation of Mayor Steve Hiatt I brought this to the attention of Kaysville City Council five days later.

From Kaysville City minutes of 1 June 2010:

Richard Willoughby stated that he has a concern with how the City bills for electricity. He explained that billing is on a tier system. If the bill goes over 1,000 kwh in a month the customer pays an additional amount, which is about 20.6%. That is not explained on the bill. To make it more clear, a software change should be made so that there is a better explanation on the bill. (Public Hearing Minutes)

Finance Director Dean Storey said at the meeting, if I recall correctly, that this change was already being planned before I brought up the issue. From the same minutes:

Dean Storey explained that he is looking at revising the utility bill to include additional information and historical usage. He explained that residential meters are on a two tier system where people pay more after 1,000 kwh to promote conservation. It also costs the City more to buy additional resources.

At the meeting it was also stated that the utility bill was being redesigned and would make it clear at what rate(s) electricity was being paid.

Questions

  1. Eight months ago the change was already in progress. Is this update more complicated than it first appeared?
  2. The redesigned bill of January 2011 (see image below) has no reference to the conservation charge. Is another redesign planned?
  3. Is there an estimate available for the implementation of the planned software change? Note that the calculations are already in place, they are just not printed on the bill.
Utilities Service Bill

January 2011 bill with document revision date and usage circled (click to enlarge)

Answers

  • If you have any answers to the questions above, or just want to add to the discussion, please comment and I will insert a summary of any answers here.
  • I will also be glad to correct any part of this post that is in error.

Conclusions

Understandably, this is not a high priority. However, it would be helpful for residents to have Kaysville City remind them that there is a conservation charge being levied. This is best accomplished at the time of billing, as is the practice of other power companies.

I am appreciative of the hard working Kaysville City employees and understand that not every request by residents can be implemented, but…

Trying to incentivize residents with a hidden conservation charge has little chance of success.

Sources and Notes

Updates

10 March 2011 — A question arose about the new utilities service bill. On the January and February 2011 bills there is an “Energy Use Tax” that has a dollar amount of “.00” as the second entry in the “Description of Current Services.” Is this the conservation charge or some other fee/tax to come later? The conservation charge is still currently hidden within the “Electric” entry.

For example, looking at my electric bill of $96.29 (excluding sales tax of $3.66):

(1,000 kwh X .09 = $90.00) + (58 kwh X .1085 = $6.29) = $96.29

So the new bill is worse than the old in that it can give the impression that there is no energy surcharge for exceeding 1,000 kwh whereas there is an additional markup of 20.6%.
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Free Scrap Metal — NOT!

KSL Free Scrap Metal ad
This classified ad offering free scrap metal appeared in KSL.com today with my cell phone number listed. This is how the ad was worded:

I have some heavy scrap meta [sic] that I need to give away asap. please come and pick it up call for address. First come First service no holds. Thanks!

At first I assumed the callers had the wrong number (which they did). After the calls kept coming I asked the callers who they wanted. Of course they wanted “V”, the person with the free scrap metal. For a moment I thought it was maybe one of Paul’s many projects, like his microwaves to arc welder undertaking.

Eventually one of the callers mentioned KSL so I searched their classifieds for “free metal”. I found the ad and clicked on the handy big red “Report Abuse” button. A few hours later, and after receiving several more calls, the ad was taken off the air. I’m glad KSL got it ironed out.

I bet you won’t hear about this on the KSL Channel 5 Eye Witness News at 10 in HD.

Update

The irony in all this is that I have earned AdSense revenue from this post.
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