Power outage hit 40K Peterborough Utilities customers Wednesday night

The lights went out around 7:30 p.m. on Wednesday for more than 40,000 Peterborough Utilities customers and Hydro One customers.

The cause of the outage seems to have originated with Hydro One, which says a breaker failed and a transmission line was down. Added to the trouble, the backup system was down for service.

“There was some joint co-operation a little bit but it was more for Hydro One to be able to fix that feeder coming in. Our crews were doing … a lot of the switching and back feeding of the system in order to be able to feed those other areas from other sections,” said David Whitehouse, vice-president of customer and corporate services with the Peterborough Utilities Group.

The outage extended to Lakefield, Norwood, Bancroft, Fenelon Falls, and a number of other communities.

Peterborough’s Fire Chief Chris Snetsinger says in cases like this, it’s important to put safety first. Take extra caution with candles and when using a power generator, he says.

“Make sure all your appliances are off during a power outage. That stove is going to come back on and could potentially start a fire and this is one of the reasons to have a working smoke alarm, test your smoke alarm, and also have a home escape plan,” said Snetsinger.

The Peterborough Utilities social media operator kept customers informed throughout the evening.

“Customers had been great, they were very, very patient, they understood it was something beyond our but control it still was an inconvenience without a doubt,” said Whitehouse.

Crews worked through the night to get things back up and running for the more than 40,000 customers left in the dark.

As of 9 p.m. Wednesday, power was restored to about 30 per cent of Peterborough Utilities customers and by 3:30 a.m. Thursday, all power was restored.

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