NORTH FAYETTE (KDKA) – It was not a good night to be without heat as temperatures dipped into the single-digits.
However, that was the case for people in North Fayette and some residents spent hours without power and heat.
Hundreds went looking for either a warm bed early Wednesday morning or battled the falling temperatures in their own homes.
It was 8 degrees outside at the North Fayette Volunteer Fire Station, which acted as a warming station for roughly 880 customers without power. A tree fell on a power line around midnight, which knocked out power and caused temperatures inside homes to drop..
“[It was 55 inside] So, really not bad considering that it was 2 degrees outside,” Devin Foster said.
Nick Leszunov said the thermostat was slowly climbing back up after dropping to about 59 degrees overnight.
Leszunov said he heard a loud boom and saw the fire that followed.
“We saw a fire – a pretty big fire going on down there – and then we lost power,” Leszunov said.
The fire is what scared the Foster family down the street, who sought refuge at a neighbor’s home.
“We took the kids and ran across the street to our neighbor’s house who still had power, until about five o’clock,” Foster said.
While it may have started with just a couple hundred without power, the number grew significantly as power crews continued to work on the problem.
“Yeah, they had to shut it off so around 5 a.m., they lost power and we just came back here,”
Many also received a call overnight from the North Fayette Police Department, who activated their Swift Reach Emergency Call System. The message let people know that the warming center was an option.
“It’s an emergency notification system to notify people if a situation like this would occur,” Lieutenant Michael Hamm said.