Sioux Center, Iowa — The Sioux Center electrical system is nearly back to normal again, after an explosion and fire last fall at one of their substations — that according to Sioux Center Utilities Engineer Matt Van Schouwen.
He says that contractors and city crews switched to the new replacement equipment at the Tower Fields substation last night (Tuesday, July 19th).
Van Schouwen says that while they have some cleanup and minor jobs to do yet, this is a major step in getting things back to normal
He says the substation that serves customers in the central and southern areas of Sioux Center exploded early on November 21st, leaving half the town of 75-hundred without electricity. As if the power outage wasn’t enough, the community also suffered a major water main break at the same time, leaving hundreds of homes and businesses without power or water.
Van Schouwen says while they don’t know exactly what happened, they know there was a fault, and while the fault was being repaired, a circuit breaker did not trip like it was supposed to, causing a significant amount of electricity to short circuit, which sparked the explosion and fire. Reports at the time indicated that nearby transformer boxes were knocked off their foundations due to the explosion.
He says they really appreciate the understanding and support of Sioux Center residents and their patience in dealing with the outage and the city’s requests to conserve electricity in the aftermath and while repairs were made.