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Squirrel causes power outage for over 10,000 customers

According to a Dominion Energy spokesperson, the outage started when a squirrel got into a substation, knocking out the power.
Credit: Helen Davies - stock.adobe.com

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. — The power went nuts in Virginia Beach Wednesday morning after a squirrel caused an outage for over 10,000 customers across the city, including two schools.

Bonita Billingsley Harris, a spokesperson for Dominion Energy, tweeted about the outage around 10:15 a.m. 

She said it started when a squirrel got into a Virginia Beach substation around 8:45 a.m.

"The squirrel got between a circuit breaker and a transformer causing a power surge that made the transformer fail," Harris told 13News Now.

Kempsville High School and Fairfield Elementary School were the two schools affected by the outage.

Harris said the power was restored after an hour and nine minutes after the power company rerouted a majority of the customers to alternate circuits.

Dominion crews are working to repair the damaged equipment and further outages aren't expected when service is restored to the normal power feed, according to Harris.

She added that Dominion has squirrel guards installed at all of its substations, which reduces animal interference thus protecting them and the electrical grid.

   

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