Stoplights along MacCorkle Avenue were not working on Tuesday afternoon. At times, drivers were honking and flashing their high beams at each other at the intersections. There was also a long line of cars filing out of the 7-Eleven on 50th Street, one of the few gas stations in Kanawha City with power.
Elijah Locke-Jones, 9, of Charleston, and his mom, Torri Locke, who live on the West Side, were at the Town Center Mall Tuesday. They had power, but no cable.
The boy said he was enjoying the day off from school, but was worried the storm might ruin trick-or-treating. He plans to dress up as Michael Jackson from "Thriller."
Trick-or-treating in Kanawha and Putnam counties had already been rescheduled to 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday, but county officials were considering whether they should reschedule trick-or-treating again because of power outages.
The annual "Trick-or-Beat" event at Appalachian Power Park, sponsored by 98.7 "The Beat" radio station, was moved to Nov. 7.
While thousands of West Virginians were struggling with snow and power outages Tuesday, Aimee Figgatt was trying to catch up with a runaway cow.
Tessa, a black Dexter cow, got loose sometime in the early morning from Figgatt's farm along West Washington Street, not far from the intersection of Roxalana Road.
"At 3 a.m. she was still outside the kitchen here," Figgatt said after a fruitless daylong search. "I've been on the phone with 911 half the day."
Reports of a wayward cow began coming in to the Kanawha County Metro 911 center at about 5 a.m. Figgatt began looking for Tessa at about 8:30 a.m., after first learning she was gone.
It's not that Figgatt never found Tessa. At one point, she even got a rope around her neck. But the spooked cow ran every time Figgatt got too close. Emergency officials were able to ping Figgatt's cellphone when she spotted the cow, but she was gone by the time anyone could have gotten to her.
"She's not tame like all our other animals," she said. "The man we got her from never handled her, and she's afraid of people, especially men."
Figgatt said Tessa never made it into town, but wandered an approximately seven-mile route through the woods around Dunbar and North Charleston.
"She made it down to the Cold Spot, and then the tracks show she went up and over into the woods," Figgatt said. Tessa was last seen at Wine Cellar Park near Dunbar.
Reports on the wandering cow came into 911 throughout the day as she was spotted in yards or along the road. Figgatt said Tessa weighs about 400 pounds, which is small by bovine standards but still a not insubstantial weight.
With cold hands and numb feet, Figgatt gave up the chase at about 2:30 p.m. Although she hasn't completely given up hope that Tessa will come home on her own or calm down enough to be captured, 911 officials have been given permission to issue orders that she be shot on sight.
"That's the only thing we can do to keep her from causing a wreck," Figgatt said.
Figgatt asked anyone who spotted Tessa to call 911, who will in turn notify Figgatt. She will try to rescue the cow herself, but admitted it might be necessary to put the animal down.
Staff writer Zac Taylor contributed to this report.
Reach Kate White at kate.wh...@wvgazette.com or 304-348-1723.
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