Mount Si Transitional center still feeling effects of January blackout

Months after a weeklong power outage that started January 18, the Mount Si Transitional Health Center in North Bend has again suffered from the effects of that event.

The center, home now to 41 people recovering from medical procedures, had to have a generator wired into the facility during the outage. Staff did not know until last month that some of the work did not meet state code. An electrical inspector found the flaws about two weeks ago, and called them to administrator Beth Marsh’s attention.

“He told us what he had concerns about, and we said ‘ok, we’re on it,’” Marsh said Thursday. She estimated the repairs would be done by the end of last week.

The center was not fined or penalized in any way because of the work, either Marsh emphasized.

“He totally held us blameless,” Marsh said of the electrical inspector. “He wasn’t even here for that.”

The inspector had just approved the electrical repairs to the laundry room, damaged by a Feb. 18 fire, when he spotted the generator flaws.

Marsh called the discovery unfortunate, but also a good development, since now they knew to make repairs to bring the generator up to code. The generator had been installed by a company that appeared at fault for the failure to meet code. The installation had been intended to be temporary, but the generator is now expected to stay in place for a few more months, Marsh said.

Although she couldn’t give an estimate on the cost of the repairs, Marsh knew that the installing company would not be reimbursing the center its costs for the repairs, adding, “That’s kind of a sore subject.”

Marsh praised the electrical inspector for being so helpful in the process, and her staff for making sure everyone stayed safe.

“It’s taught us a lot,” she said. “I’m really proud of the fact that everyone has remained in the facility and stayed safe. That’s saying something.”


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