Stray soccer ball hits power line, plunges customers into darkness

Stock image, St. George News

ST. GEORGE — Power went out for approximately 150 customers Monday evening after students at Red Rock Canyon School kicked a soccer ball into a power line.

Power is restored to the recreation area behind Red Rock Canyon School where students kicked a soccer ball into a power line, causing an area outage, St. George, Utah, Feb. 6, 2017 | Photo by Joseph Witham, St. George News

St. George Fire responded to the incident around 6:30 p.m. when power surged and a power box caught fire in the area of 700 E. St. George Blvd.

“A few of the students there kicked a ball up into the secondary power line, and they had a flashover,” Marc Mortensen, St. George assistant to the city manager, said.

The students were reportedly in a recreation area behind the school when the ball was kicked into the power lines.

“Basically, that opened two circuits,” Mortensen said. “The ball made contact with the equipment and the equipment reacted like it’s supposed to. It thought that there was some danger to the system, so the pulse circuits opened. One ran up into the industrial park, and the other one goes downtown.”

The power lines were sparking, Mortensen said, and power went out completely to the area including several blocks south and north of St. George Boulevard.

Emergency responders from Energy Services and the fire department isolated the issue and restored power within approximately 20 minutes of it going out.

Emergency crews respond after a light pole began sparking at the park at 2450 East, St. George, Utah, Feb. 6, 2017 | Photo by Joseph Witham, St. George News

Minutes later, at the park at 2450 East, a light pole began sparking during a brief, windy rainstorm.

Fire and Energy Services personnel arrived and disabled the light pole’s power. As a precaution, crews also shut off the breaker that supplies power to the pole from the utility room behind the park’s restrooms, St. George Fire Battalion Chief Darren Imlay said.

The smell of smoke was still apparent in the air in the park at the time this report was taken.

This report is based on preliminary information provided by law enforcement or other emergency responders and may not contain the full scope of findings.

St. George News reporter Ric Wayman contributed to this report.

Email: jwitham@stgnews.com

Twitter: @STGnews

Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2017, all rights reserved.

 

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1 Comment

  • Brian February 6, 2017 at 10:20 pm

    I’m guessing the kids had to go home and change their shorts.

    It looks like the terrorists in Kanab were working too hard. All they needed was a soccer ball… :}

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