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NorthWestern Energy crews assisting Avista to restore natural gas service for 37,000 customers in Idaho and Washington

Date: Nov 10, 2023

TYPE: News


Butte, Mont. – Nov. 10, 2023 – Twenty-two NorthWestern Energy natural gas crew members are assisting Avista crews in north central Idaho and eastern Washington to restore natural gas service to 37,000 Avista customers.

On Nov. 8 a third party damaged a gas pipeline owned by Williams Pipeline that transports natural gas to Avista’s system.

Avista requested resources from area energy companies to assist with the work to restore natural gas services, a process involving many steps over multiple days.

Each customer’s natural gas meter must be shut off, the distribution system is then re-pressurized, then crews will go door-to-door to turn meters back on and relight natural gas appliances. 

“Our crews said ‘yes’ immediately when we asked for volunteers and I had calls before that from our folks asking how they could help Avista,” NorthWestern Energy Vice President Distribution Jason Merkel said. “The scope of this outage is enormous.

“This industry works 365 days, around the clock to provide safe, reliable energy service to customers. We support each other in our common mission.”

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NorthWestern Energy - Delivering a Bright Future

NorthWestern Energy provides essential energy infrastructure and valuable services that enrich lives and empower communities while serving as long-term partners to our customers and communities. We work to deliver safe, reliable, and innovative energy solutions that create value for customers, communities, employees, and investors. We do this by providing low-cost and reliable service performed by highly-adaptable and skilled employees. We provide electricity and / or natural gas to approximately 764,200 customers in Montana, South Dakota, Nebraska, and Yellowstone National Park. We have provided service in South Dakota and Nebraska since 1923 and in Montana since 2002.


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Jo Dee Black