City Manager Discusses Recent Power Outage

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Businessman Skip Pikus directing traffic outsude his store on the corner of Front Street and Walnut Street minutes after the power outage.
Businessman Skip Pikus directing traffic outsude his store on the corner of Front Street and Walnut Street minutes after the power outage.

By Terry Rogers

On Saturday, September 28, the City of Milford suffered power outages in several areas throughout the city, including the downtown area, Rehoboth Boulevard, Milford-Harrington Highway (Route 14), and out to Coastal Highway (Route 1). City Manager Richard Carmean said that the power was out for approximately one hour.

“I got quite a few calls on Saturday during that hour,” Mr. Carmean said. “Since the city employees were not working since it was a Saturday, we had to call in the on-call crew, and that does take a little time. Of course, it’s not quite like the electric in your house when a circuit breaker kicks. At home, you just kick it back on, but we have to do a lot more before we just throw the switch back on.”

According to Mr. Carmean, two of the town’s four circuits blew in the vicinity of the IG Burton building on Rehoboth Boulevard. Crews are not completely sure why exactly the two circuits blew, but suspect that it could have been a bird or squirrel coming in contact with current. Mr. Carmean said there were reports from residents in the area of a loud bang just before the lights went out, and that is common when something like a bird or animal interrupts circuits. Mr. Carmean estimates that the outage affected approximately 2,000 customers.

“If the new substation had been online, that outage would only have been a few hundred customers, rather than a few thousand,” Mr. Carmean explained. “Right now, we don’t have a way to feed electric back into town when one of the circuits goes down. The new substation should resolve that problem for us.”

Mr. Carmean credited the quick action of the city electrical crews for determining the problem and getting electric service restored quickly.