Monday October 1, 2012

PITTSFIELD -- A squirrel was the culprit behind Sunday afternoon’s power outage that affected 600 customers of Western Massachusetts Electric Co., utility officials said.

WMECO reported the outage occurred around 3:30 p.m. on Westwood Road, between Barker Road and West Housatonic Street. Spokeswoman Katie Blint said the squirrel caused a transformer on a utility pole to malfunction, resulting in electrical wires snapping off several poles.

No one was injured.

Electric service was restored to 320 homes and businesses, include The Berkshire Eagle, shortly after 5 p.m. About an hour later, all but 17 of the remaining 280 WMECO customers were back on line.

Blint said utility crews needed to repair the extensive damage to the wiring along Westwood Road. She expected full power restoration by late Sunday night.

The outage didn’t delay the publication of The Eagle’s newspaper for today.

To reach Dick Lindsay:
rlindsay@berkshireeagle.com,
or (413) 496-6233.