Heavy gusts factor in power outage, poor road conditions, school closings

GREENFIELD — Hundreds of Greenfield residents were without power Friday afternoon, the result of high winds after the first snowfall of the season that had many students and teachers start their holiday break early.

Two inches of snow fell Thursday night and early Friday morning – the first official day of winter. Wind gusts reached 48 mph but died down throughout the day Friday.

Local road crews struggled to keep up. As they plowed, wind would push the snow back onto the roads, especially north-south streets. Greenfield-Central and Southern Hancock schools were closed, while the other districts in the county were on a two-hour delay.

Shortly after noon Friday, 682 homes on the city’s far west side lost power for an 1½ hours. Greenfield Power & Light struggled locating the problem, but eventually found that wind had likely blown a wire. Superintendent Nelson Castrodale said the arrester, a knob used to protect the equipment, had blown previously, perhaps from a lightning strike.

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