Beavers and balloons blamed for power outages in 2017

BC Hydro compiles a list of most memorable outages of last year

From beavers to balloons, to ships — BC Hydro is recounting the most memorable causes of power outages in 2017.

Crews responded to more than 17,800 outages last years with wildfires in the Central and Southern Interior topping the list.

RELATED: BC Hydro to give credit evacuees

Last summer 61,00 BC Hydro customers were in the dark as wildfires raged across the region damaging 490 power poles, 114 cross arms and 377 spans of wire.

RELATED: $90M spent million fighting B.C. wildfires since April 1

At number two it’s freezing rain and heavy, wet snow which caused more than 360,000 in the Lower Mainland and Fraser Valley to lose power over a six-day period last February.

RELATED: B.C. braces for more snow

Other highlights include:

Animal encounters

  • A beaver gnawed a tree that fell on a power line, causing the community of Hixon in Northern B.C. to lose power.
  • A squirrel chewed through a piece of electrical equipment causing it to catch fire and 180 customers in Burnaby – including a local cheese factory – to lose power.

Balloon blunders

  • Loose birthday party balloons contacted power lines and caused an outage to 800 in downtown Vancouver on a Friday evening.
  • Balloons used to promote a sale at a car dealership on Vancouver Island blew into a primary line, resulting in an outage to the surrounding area.

Risky business

  • Perpetrators cut down power poles with a chainsaw in Prince George to steal copper wire from a transformer.
  • A tanker ship was attempting to anchor and contacted an underground cable, resulting in an outage to 2,000 customers on the southern Gulf Islands.

For more information, visit bchydro.com/outages.


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

VIDEO: Teen girl sent to hospital after fight stemming from house party

A witness said there were dozens of teenagers screaming and arguing in the parking lot after the incident

Pink’s Comedy Club to open at Surrey’s Flamingo with Ivan Decker show

Opening-night event April 12 at King George Boulevard venue

Free parking not in the cards for Fraser Valley hospitals

Chair says board may look at ways to make parking easier, but not free

Man dies while being taken into custody in South Surrey neighbourhood

The Independent Investigations Office of B.C. has opened an investigation into the incident

Driver sought in connection with South Surrey hit-and-run

Police say 38-year-old pedestrian suffered serious, but not life-threatening injuries

VIDEO: All-midget wrestling shows in Cloverdale, Chilliwack this weekend

Company boss Short Sleeve Sampson: ‘It’s midget wrestling, and it’s always been midget wrestling’

BCHL Today: Surrey Eagles in the driver’s seat and Ethan Martini takes a seat

BCHL Today is a (near) daily look at what’s going on around the league and the junior A world.

New Liberal bill would tighten controls on sale, licensing of firearms in Canada

Measures are intended to assist police in investigating gun trafficking and other crimes

Murder charges upgraded for B.C. man accused of killing wife and daughters

Crown approved new information on Jacob Forman’s file

5 to start your day

Some puppies need naming, a police-involved death in South Surrey and more

Janet Austin announced as B.C.’s new lieutenant governor

Austin has served as YWCA Metro Vancouver CEO since 2003

Ex-French president Sarkozy in custody on Gadhafi claims

Former French President Nicolas Sarkozy was placed in custody as part of an investigation that he received millions of euros in illegal financing

Hockey pioneer Kwong dies at 94

Vernon’s Larry Kwong was the first player to break NHL colour barrier in 1948

Most Read