A surge of high-voltage power plants in Colorado and New Mexico is causing thousands of people to evacuate their homes.
The latest to go offline was the U.S. Department of Energy’s Colorado River Power Authority in the city of Durango on Monday, which has been without power for nearly two months.
It shut down its power plants because of a transformer meltdown that is affecting the power grid in neighboring New Mexico.
The outage is the latest to hit the Colorado River Authority in two weeks, which operates the waterway’s power system and supplies water to more than 300,000 people.
The authority says it is still assessing the damage, but has said it could take several days before power returns to normal.
A spokeswoman for the authority said the outage was caused by a transformer malfunction at a plant in Durango.
The outage was due to a transformer failure that was impacting power flow to water and a transformer in a neighboring plant, the spokeswoman said.
The transformer failure also impacted other water system systems in the region, including the Navajo Generating Station and the Pueblo Electric Generating System, she said.
The state is asking customers in the area to keep their distance and to avoid travel to the affected areas, according to a news release from Gov.
The agency’s emergency response teams are on the scene, but the agency said it is not evacuating residents.
A spokesperson for the governor said the governor is urging the public to remain at home.
Residents in the affected area are encouraged to stay in their homes or in their cars and call the agency at 303-221-5343.
The governor’s office also tweeted that residents who are planning to evacuate should call their local utility to make arrangements.