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Vehicle collision causes 16,000+ customers to lose power in Citrus Heights

SMUD power outage, Citrus Heights
SMUD’s online power outage map indicated that more than 16,000 customers were without power briefly on Wednesday night. // Image courtesy, SMUD.org

Sentinel staff report–
More than 16,000 customers in the northwestern portion of Citrus Heights lost power Wednesday night after a vehicle collision caused damage to a power pole on Antelope Road near Interstate 80. Power was reportedly restored to most customers within about 10 minutes.

SMUD’s online power outage map indicated that 16,691 customers in the Citrus Heights area lost power around 10:09 p.m., with the cause listed as “equipment damaged by car” and an estimated restoration time of 11:45 p.m.

A SMUD spokesperson said in an email reply to The Sentinel Thursday morning that the cause of the outage was a vehicle that crashed into two guy wires, which are stabilizing wires that attach to power poles and are anchored to the ground. The spokesperson said “about 6,000 (customers) were restored in 9 minutes; 8,000 in 10 minutes and the remaining 2,700 in 34 minutes.”

As of 10:30 p.m., SMUD reported that more than 1,000 customers had called in regarding the outage. A spokeswoman for SMUD previously told The Sentinel the utility district responds to such situations by re-routing power to quickly restore electricity to an effected area.

In March 2016, more than 16,000 customers also lost power after a suspected drunk driver crashed into a power pole on Antelope Road. The following month, another car crashed into a power pole on PFE Road, which caused about 17,000 customers in Citrus Heights and the nearby community of Antelope to lose power for at least an hour.

From 2016: Vehicle hits power pole; 16,000 Citrus Heights residents lose power

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