Northwest Digest

Staff and Wire reports

Posted: Wednesday, January 12, 2005

Helicopter reaches Kaktovik with techs

ANCHORAGE - An Alaska National Guard helicopter reached Kaktovik on Tuesday with technicians who hoped to repair the village's damaged power system.

Kaktovik, an Arctic village of about 300, lost power Sunday when a blizzard packing near hurricane-force winds drove temperatures to 20 degrees below zero. With wind chill, the temperature was about 60 below.

Some homes have been without power since Friday.

Kaktovik's power plant quit Sunday evening. Many residents sought shelter at the village school until it lost power on Sunday too, said Jim Butchart of the state Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management.

Eight or nine families from the school were moved to the village's heavy equipment maintenance building because it still had power. About 100 people were staying in the building.

Alaska National Guard spokeswoman Kalei Brooks said a Pave Hawk helicopter and an HC130 cargo airplane reached the village Tuesday afternoon.

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