The small Oregon city of Oakridge, located in the Willamette National Forest, has been struggling since it got an unusual amount of snow on Sunday.
The average snowfall there is four inches a year, but the town got nearly a foot this week. Downed trees led to widespread power outages and closed Highway 58, the main road leading in and out of town.
Chrissy Hollett, city council president for Oakridge, told OPB’s “Think Out Loud” that the power finally came back on at her house after six days.
“We’ve got a lot of people still kind of stranded in their homes because they’ve got so much snow piled up on their vehicles,” she said.
The town made national news earlier in the week when an Amtrak train with 183 passengers onboard was stranded nearby for almost two days. Hollett said they weren’t the only ones.
“We actually had a school bus full of junior high kids from — I think it was Hoodoo ski area — and they were also stuck here for a little over two days,” she said. “One of the local churches put them up.”
There has been one bright spot in the chaos. A baby girl was born on the third day after the storm, according to Hollett. She said the delivery went well and the baby was healthy.
As residents begin to get power restored to their homes, the Oregon Department of Transportation is allowing some traffic on Highway 58 at specific times as they work to fully reopen the road.