Hermiston — Some 9,450 Umatilla Electric Cooperative and Hermiston Energy Services customers lost power early Friday when a 115-kilovolt line was damaged during a farm harvesting operation, according to a news release from the cooperative.
At 2:20 a.m., a protective breaker opened at UECs wholesale power point-of-delivery at McNary. That touched off a widespread outage to customers served by the Power City, Hermiston Butte, Umatilla, Westland, Ordnance, Homestead and Butter Creek substations.
UEC crews patrolling power lines to determine why the breaker opened found a 115-kV power pole had been damaged during farm harvesting in the Ordnance vicinity. Crews searched that area because flashes of light had been observed south of Interstate 84.
Power was restored at 4:56 a.m. to 7,263 customers. By 7:30 a.m., all but about 292 customers had been restored to power. Crews are working to restore power to the Ordnance substation. Ordnance may have to remain out of power until crews can replace the pole.