OKANOGAN COUNTY, Wash. -- The Carlton Complex fire power outages are creating big problems for businesses struggling to operate as flames blacken thousands of acres and destroy homes.
The wildfire has left more than 3,000 customers without power and about 1/3 of those outages are in Pateros.
Along Highway 97 in Pateros, Apple House warehouse and storage is nearly empty. The company normally packages and sells apples and cherries for Gebbers Farms. However, workers have spent the last couple of days on the move.
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Apple House, which employs 150 people, has about 35 large refrigerator rooms filled with crates of fruit. But the power outage forced crews to move to other distribution sites with working refrigerators. Workers have transported all the fruit to facilities in Brewster and Chelan.
The company did not lose any product, but the director said he is more worried about his employees and community bouncing back.
Director Bob Grandy said the power outage will not impact fruit deliveries or the price of their products.