Cold Temps Leaves Some MN Xcel Energy Customers Without Natural Gas
High-demand caused a Minnesota utility company to turn off the Natural Gas service for some of its customers in Princeton on Tuesday night - at the depths of the cold snap. 150 people were left without Natural Gas to their homes as Xcel Energy turned off the service to make up for the overload on the system.
The excessively cold temperatures caused a higher-than-planned on demand on Natural Gas. Because of that, pressure in the system dwindled to the point that it would cause a lack of service; that lack of pressure in the pipes would have caused wide-spread gas outtages. In order to be defensive in the situation, Xcel made the hard decision to cut off service for a targeted area - one that would cause the least amount of disruptions.
Customers who found themselves without Natural Gas to heat their homes were given rooms at a nearby hotel; they were also provided with electric space heaters to leave on in their homes to maintain a safe-enough temperature to not freeze up the pipes.