Lights & Sirens

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Power restored, but cause still unknown for outage Tacoma’s North and West ends

Post by Doug Conarroe on May 31, 2010 at 3:11 pm |
May 31, 2010 8:47 pm

Just about the same time the sun showed up, the power went out, spoiling Memorial Day fun for many Tacoma residents.

A “major equipment failure” at a Tacoma Public Utilities substation cut power to some 10,000 homes and businesses in the city’s Westgate neighborhood and surrounding areas in the city’s North and West ends for about four hours this afternoon.

Crews restored the electricity by about 5 p.m., utilities spokeswoman Chris Gleason said.

They were still trying to sort out what caused the outage, but there was some thought it might have been the result of a mylar balloon striking high-voltage lines, Gleason said.

Whatever the origin, it brought about what she called a “major equipment failure” at the Pearl Street substation.

That type of problem “is very unusual for us,” she said.

Some residents noticed power coming on briefly at periods in the afternoon, then shutting off again. That’s not unusual as equipment is worked on, Gleason added.

The outage began at around 1 p.m.

Crews rerouted power to get electricity back on in area homes and businesses and will continue work on a permanent fix on Tuesday, Gleason said.

Tacoma, Traffic news
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