Afternoon outage leaves much of North Mesa powerless

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Los Alamos Dept. of Public Utilities reports that North Mesa customers were subjected to a power outage Tuesday afternoon. Some callers to the Los Alamos Monitor reported that power went down for more than two hours.

It is worth noting that the reason the outage went longer than initially anticipated is associated with the nature of the line contact, a spokesperson for the DPU said. The digging contractor was using a high pressure hose and vacuum which both exposed and breached one wire of a three phase direct bury electric line.

It was unclear if the other two phases of the line might have been breached or close to breaching. So, before the electric linemen could get into the trench to work on the lines, the other two phases needed to be brought down which affected about 500 more customers (after the original 250). Safety is a top DPU priority. Bringing the other two phases down and then all three back up again, extended the repair timeframe, but kept everyone safe, according to the initial statement from DPU.

LAMonitor.com will have more details as they become available.