Power Outage on the Northwest Side - Tucson News Now

Power Outage on the Northwest Side

Mark Stine KOLD News 13 Reporter

Northwest side residents had to find something to do on Sunday since they didn't have any power.

"We're kind of just hanging out in there."

Sara Tracy was ready to take in some serious NCAA basketball, but at 11:30, the TV went black.

"We're big basketball fans and we're disappointed and we don't even have a battery backup for our radio to listen to it," Tracy explained.

Down the street Larry Chambers isn't worried about basketball, he's hot. "Little warm, a little sweat."

Without any A.C. Larry tried to keep his mind off of the power outage. "Took a nap this afternoon, played with the dog a little bit."

13,000 other customers on the Northwest side between Tangerine and Ina, and La Canada and the Tucson Mountains, were in the same predicament.

"It's been a pretty busy day for us," Joe Salkowski with Tucson Electric Power said.

This Northwest side substation was the source of the problem.

Salkowski explained, "We had a squirrel crawl up into some of our equipment at a substation that caused a short circuit that damaged a large transformer."

Customers were out of power for five hours. Tucson Electric Crews re-routed many of the 13,000 customers. "We route power to those customers from different substations and that allows us to get them back into service more quickly while we make repairs to the original equipment."

Over on the Southeast side TEP crews spent most of the morning replacing downed power poles after a micro-burst wiped them out Saturday night, knocking out power to nearly three thousand customers.

"It was in the middle of doing that job that we learned about this situation up on the Northwest side so we got some additional crews on the phones, scrambled up in the other direction," Salkowski said.

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