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Hapless Squirrel Kills Power to 15,000 Greenwich, Connecticut Electric Customers


More than half of Greenwich, Connecticut began a Thursday earlier this month without power thanks to a very curious and very unlucky squirrel.

According to a spokesman for Connecticut Light & Power (CL&P), the state’s largest electric utility, the hapless squirrel decided to take a bite out of a power line at about 8:15 a.m. on Oct. 13.

It was a fatal decision for the squirrel, which was killed instantly by thousands of volts of electricity. The resulting spark reportedly sent flames 150 feet into the air. As a result of the terminal chomp, a piece of equipment at one of the electric utility’s substations failed and more than 15,000 of the town’s 27,910 electric customers lost power for much of the day.

Police officers were called in to direct traffic in parts of Greenwich where traffic lights were out.

CL&P, which distributes electricity to the town of Greenwich, said that most customers had power restored by midday.


Squirrel Blamed for Connecticut Power Outages,” Boston Herald, Oct. 13, 2011.

Squirrel Turns Off the Lights,” New York Post, Oct. 15, 2011.

(Hat tip for pic to Ed Hass.)

10/28/2011 9:22:00 AM
in General