UPDATE: Live wires on Marine Drive [photo]
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Russ Veenema/Port Angeles Regional Chamber of Commerce
Here is a picture of live wires sparking alongside Marine Drive in Port Angeles around 3 p.m. today.A large contingent of Port Angeles city fire, police and utility personnel responded to the scene, which is near the Port of Port Angeles boat yard.

By Jeremy Schwartz
Peninsula Daily News

PORT ANGELES — Blips in the lights and any other electronic equipment felt this afternoon in central Port Angeles were the result of a downed power line on Marine Drive, city light operations staff said.

The mishap occurred a little before 3 p.m. after a Port of Port Angeles flatbed trucking clearing tree branches in the 800 block of Marine Drive, near High Tide Seafoods Inc., backed into a guidewire supporting a power pole, said Brian Anders, an electrical engineer with city of Port Angeles electrical operations.

The guidewire snapped, causing the power pole to shake and the power lines it was supporting to slap together, Anders explained.

This contact caused the casings of the power lines to melt and one of the lines to fall to the ground with electricity still running through it, he said.

Port Angeles police officers responded to find a fully charged line lying on the ground, Deputy Chief Brian Smith said.

The Port Angeles Fire Department also was called out to deal with small ground fires caused by the sparking live wire, though the fires eventually burned themselves out, Smith said.

No injuries were reported as a result of the downed line, though traffic was taken down to one lane as of about 4 p.m. today, Smith said.

City engineers shut off power to the immediate area to repair the line, and Anders said he expected power to be out for about three hours as of about 4 p.m.

Anders could not estimate how many business might be affected by the power outage.

Port Angeles police were directing traffic at the intersection of Marine Drive and South Tumwater Truck Route because the power to the stoplight had been shut off, Smith said.

Last modified: October 26. 2012 4:46PM
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