Note: This story was updated at 4:30 p.m.
Power has been restored to most, if not all, customers after being out across nearly all of Oak Ridge on Sunday afternoon, the Oak Ridge Police Department said.
If you are still without power, you can call (865) 425-1803.
The cause of the power outages weren’t immediately clear, but there were thunderstorms over Oak Ridge on Sunday afternoon. The storms brought heavy rain and lightning and thunder.
It wasn’t immediately clear how long the power was out for different customers and where.
It would be the second major outage in Oak Ridge since mid-June, the weekend of the Secret City Festival, when the city had several electrical power outages. The most widespread outage that weekend occurred Saturday afternoon, when approximately 11,455 homes and businesses were affected across the city. The outage area included nearly everything north of the Oak Ridge Turnpike and west of Rutgers Avenue. Other areas in the central-south part of the city were also affected. Power was out for about two hour and 20 minutes.
The major outage that weekend was traced back to equipment at the city’s primary power substation on Wilberforce Avenue. At the time, municipal workers and the Tennessee Valley Authority were investigating the cause of the outage. It’s not clear what they found. At the time, the city said it was possible that lightning strikes at or near the substation may have caused the problem, but the staff was not certain.
The weather that weekend caused the first cancellation of a Secret City Festival concert, the Saturday night concert that was to feature 38 Special. Refunds were issued.
Oak Ridge was hit with several rounds of rain that Saturday, producing a total of 2.6 inches starting Friday morning. The rain and standing water, along with electrical hazards and the threat of more storms, forced the Oak Ridge Fire Department to cancel the concert and close off the park area, the main festival site. The Loverboy concert on Friday night was affected by lightning that weekend, and the festival was affected by the power outages because most vendors had generators but others did not.
There were other smaller outages that weekend, including one caused by a car crash that broke a utility pole, affecting about 350 customers in the area of West Vanderbilt Drive on Sunday afternoon.
On Sunday, August 4, the ORPD reminded drivers to treat signal-controlled intersections that don’t have power as four-way stops.
More information will be added as it becomes available.
You can contact John Huotari, owner and publisher of Oak Ridge Today, at (865) 951-9692 or [email protected]
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