Power outage causes scare

April 28, 2015

power outage -1By Allison Scarbrough. OCP Editor.

HART — A power outage Tuesday afternoon, April 28, caused by a blown-out substation near GHSP on Industrial Park Drive apparently caused small fires at the Oceana County Jail and Shopko, but no injuries were reported and no significant damage occurred.

Hart Area Fire Department was dispatched to an electrical explosion near GHSP atpower outage -2 approximately 1 p.m., where firefighters extinguished a grass fire due to the substation explosion, Hart Fire Chief Ken Klotz said. Then, two calls immediately followed at Shopko and the jail.

The problems at the jail and Shopko are believed to have been caused by the power outage. The circulating electrical motor in the boiler in the jail’s basement went out, causing a small fire, said Oceana County Sheriff Robert Farber. “We could smell something hot and found it in the boiler room,” Farber said. Evacuation of the jail was not necessary, he said, but the facility was placed on lockdown. The jail has a generator for backup power, he said.

Shopko was evacuated, and store management expected the store to remain closed for at least a few more hours this afternoon. A heating unit apparently burned out when the store lost power, employees said.

Some areas of the city remained without power at least an hour after the incident, and authorities did not immediately know when all power would be restored. It was not immediately known what caused the substation explosion.

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