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SILOAM SPRINGS -- More than 1,800 homes and businesses lost power on Thursday, including two Simmons Foods plants and Siloam Springs Regional Hospital.

A squirrel was responsible for the outage which began at 2 p.m. and lasted an hour and a half. The squirrel got into a switch-gear on University and Washington streets, said Allison Macias, administrative assistant for the Electrical Department.

The event was compounded when breakers at the Lincoln substation overloaded, said Art Farine, electrical director.

The hospital lost power, but backup generators were used to power its facilities, said Cathy Davis, director of marketing and business development for the hospital.

"Patient care continued without interruption throughout yesterday's brief power outage," Davis said. "We have an emergency response plan and a generator with large enough capacity to power the facility. Both were activated effectively and we stayed in constant communication with city personnel until the issue was resolved."

After the second outage, electricity was rerouted through a different substation while repairs were made to breakers and the switch-gear.

NW News on 09/14/2014

Print Headline: Squirrel Causes Power Outage

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