City’s business district deals with electrical outage

A squirrel was believed to be the culprit for a power outage Thursday morning that impacted many downtown businesses and residents, according to city fire officials.

A squirrel came in contact with a power source at the PPL substation at the foot of Hepburn Street, officials were told.

Shortly after 7 a.m., firefighters were dispatched to Little League Boulevard and Hepburn Street to investigate a transformer that shorted out. It is suspected that the squirrel at the substation was the reason for the transformer blowing out.

Just under 700 customers lost power, but power was restored to at least half of them within 20 minutes, according to a PPL spokeswoman.

Among those impacted by the outage was City Hall as well as the Lycoming County Prison, just a block south.

With traffic lights out, portable STOP signs were quickly set up at several intersections with the hope that accidents would be avoided.

Service was restored to all downtown customers shortly after 11 a.m., which was indeed a positive sign for those in need of air conditioners and fans on a day where the temperatures rose to the mid-90s.


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