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            News Release




Subject:   Highway 20 Reopens to Diablo Dam
For Immediate Release:   
2/4/2008  1:57:00 PM
For More Information Contact:


SEATTLE - Seattle City Light workers and Environmental Learning Center class no longer cut off

Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) crews reopened S.R. 20 to Seattle City Light’s Ross and Diablo Hydroelectric Projects on the Skagit River, at 9:35 a.m. Monday.

Seattle City Light residents and workers at the town of Diablo and the North Cascades Institute’s Environmental Learning Center, located at Diablo Lake, had been cut off due to an avalanche that closed the road on Tuesday.

The WSDOT crews worked Sunday and this morning to open one lane to allow City Light trucks and equipment access to its facilities. City Light had been using a helicopter to ferry supplies and personnel to and from the project when weather permitted.

The town of Diablo is home to about 23 Seattle City Light workers and their families. City Light maintains several facilities including a powerhouse and a cookhouse in the town of Diablo. These facilities were accessible to anyone stranded by the road closure.

"The project ran with no interruptions," said Skagit Hydroelectric Project manager Dave Bowers. "Although the Diablo residents were isolated, everyone at the Skagit Hydro Project pitched in to help with maintenance and operations."

The adjoining Environmental Learning Center, operated by North Cascades Institute, has 43 people on site including adult students and staff who also were cut off by the road closure. The Institute is well stocked. Media inquiries for the Institute should be directed to: Saul Weisberg, Kris Molesworth and Christian Martin in the Sedro-Woolley headquarters. They can be reached at 360-856-5700 ext. 209 or nci@ncascades.org

WSDOT has set up a hot line for people who are interested in finding out more about conditions on SR20. Call 360-707-5056.



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