Heavy, wet snow that weighed down power lines and trees caused more than 8,000 Co-Mo members to lose power Monday night and Tuesday morning.
Co-Mo crews have been working to restore service since before midnight, but the quickly falling snow and treacherous road conditions have made it difficult to keep up.
"Crews are continuing to make progress, but it is a constant battle to turn each line back on," said Chuck Tuttle, the cooperative's Operations Manager.
Co-Mo Safety Coordinator Jimmy Jester said the most important thing for members to remember is to stay away from downed power lines.
"Always assume a downed power line is live," he said. "And parents should check around their home before sending the kids out to play to make sure there aren't any downed lines or low-hanging lines weighed down by snow."
Tuttle had no estimate as of 8 a.m. of when power would be restored to any specific area. Members can keep up with the latest updates at facebook.com/comoelectric or the co-op's website, co-mo.coop.
"The typical way electric utilities deal with large-scale outages is to work on the problems that would restore the most members first and then move on to the next issue," he said. "That's what we're doing."
As of 8 a.m., some of the largest outages were in Ivy Bend, Gravois Mills, Sunrise Beach and Prairie Home. Those four areas accounted for nearly half of the outages.
Jester said members with medical issues requiring power - such as those on oxygen - should execute their emergency plan. Members can call 2-1-1 for the state's emergency management hotline.
"All our crews are working on these outages," said Ken Johnson, the cooperative's CEO and General Manager. "The weather is certainly less than ideal to be working on restoration, but we will get the power back on as quickly as is safely possible. I just want to thank our members for their patience and support."
Co-Mo's service area comprises approximately 2,300 square miles in Central Missouri. Co-Mo exists to fulfill its members' needs for superior electric and related services at fair and reasonable prices and support its communities through economic, civic and educational opportunities.