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Animal in substation likely caused power outages, officials say

October 25, 2012 |  8:05 am

An animal -- and not strong winds -- is most likely to blame for widespread power outages in the Los Angeles area stretching from Montebello to Hollywood, utility officials said Thursday.

The outages began at about 9 p.m. Wednesday and initially affected about 28,000 customers in areas including Alhambra and South Pasadena. More than half of those had their electricity restored within 20 minutes and lights were back on for most of the others before the evening ended.

Caroline Aoyagi, a spokeswoman for Southern California Edison, said the outages occurred "because an animal got into a substation." She said she wasn't sure what kind of animal it was.

There were a couple of outages still affecting customers Thursday morning, including 70 residences in Inglewood that have been without power since about 8:45 p.m. Wednesday. Aoyagi said that in Alhambra, a car struck a utility pole at about 5:46 a.m. Thursday morning and knocked out power to more than 3,300 customers.

The L.A. Department of Water and Power tweeted about 10:15 p.m. Wednesday that 1,600 customers in Silver Lake were without power, followed a minute later by a tweet of 1,000 customers in the dark in the Hollywood/Los Feliz area.

At the time, the LADWP's Twitter feed said restoration was scheduled to take 10 hours but that crews often beat those times. It is not clear what caused those outages.


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-- Ari Bloomekatz