Burned wire blamed for power outage

Several areas of downtown Warren had power problems on Wednesday.

According to Penelec, 892 customers were without power starting at 1:25 p.m. Power was restored at about 2:20, but had to be shut back down for repairs, External Affairs Manager Linda Routzahn said.

One of three wires that comes from a substation on Fifth Avenue burned, she said, leaving some areas without power while neighboring areas were unaffected.

“An underground line that comes out of the substation… and goes up a pole,” she said. “Somewhere along that a wire burned.”

Power was taken back down at about 3:15 and was expected to be fully restored by 4 p.m., Routzahn said.

The outage led to a partial shutdown of power at the courthouse. Court proceedings were delayed throughout the afternoon and county employees reported sporadic computer outages and downed phones.

Some traffic lights were out in the area, including the light at the intersection of Fifth Avenue and Market Street. During the early stages of the outage, a temporary four-way stop was erected. As heavier traffic came on in the late afternoon, police stationed an officer to direct traffic. The outage did result in some traffic backup on Market Street in the late afternoon.

Power was out at Warren Area High School, Warren Area Elementary Center, and Warren County Career Center. According to Warren County School District Superintendent Dr. William Clark, the school day concluded under auxiliary power.