Update: Substation fire cuts power to 19,616 National Grid customers


ADAMS -- National Grid is slowly restoring power to substations across Northern Berkshire, with hopes that some 19,616 customers in Northern Berkshire will have power by 11 a.m.

As of 10:20 a.m., crews were restoring power to individual substations across North County.

Residents of Adams, North Adams, Williamstown, Clarksburg, Cheshire Hancock and Florida lost power around 3:30 a.m. when a fire broke out at the Adams substation, a company spokeswoman said Friday morning.

The fire is believed to have been caused by an equipment failure that subsequently caused a small explosion. It is not believed to be weather related.

National Grid spokeswoman Chris Milligan said even though the substation is located in Adams, the power outage was widespread because that particular substation feeds into "all the smaller substations."

She said crews believed they would be able to restore power by 8 a.m., but more damage was found during the repair process.

Police in North Adams were out directing traffic, as the outage included traffic signals in all the affected towns.

Adams-Cheshire Regional School District, which was scheduled to have a half day, canceled classes. Most other Northern Berkshire school districts were operating under a two-hour delay. Hoosac Valley's softball game and track meet are still scheduled to take place today.

The widespread outage is affecting water pressure in Adams, according to a message from Town Administrator Jonathan Butler via a CodeRed emergency call.

Butler also warned residents that water pressure was being affected by the outage - a problem that will be restored with the power. He said National Grid crews were working diligently to restore power, but was unable to give a time frame for when that would be.

State police said there have been no major emergencies as a result of the power outage.


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