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MidAmerican Explains Thursday Power Outages In Sheldon, Boyden

Sheldon, Iowa — MidAmerican Energy customers in parts of Sheldon experienced two electric service interruptions Thursday.

MidAmerican Energy spokesman Geoff Greenfield says the first incident occurred just before 2:45 Thursday afternoon, near 10th Street and Washington Avenue. Greenfield says that incident happened when a higher voltage overhead line dropped onto a lower voltage line below it, leading to an outage that affected 800 customers. Additionally, the incident caused a brief surge that affected three homes, resulting in a fire at one of those homes. He says MidAmerican crews restored about a third of those 800 customers just before 4:00, and all but four customers shortly after 4:30. Crews restored the remaining four customers just after 6:15. 

Then around 5:30 Thursday afternoon, as the area was experiencing a weather event, at least four transmission structures toppled west of Sheldon. That incident affected Boyden customers and not customers in Sheldon. Greenfield says MidAmerican crews restored service to those affected customers at around 7:00 Thursday evening.

Then around 8:00 pm, the same Sheldon circuit that sustained the 2:45 pm outage experienced a second outage, unfortunately affecting those same customers. He says crews found a lightning arrester that interrupted the circuit. Greenfield says it’s not clear whether the component sustained a lightning strike or if it was somehow associated with the earlier incident. According to Greenfield, MidAmerican crews made repairs and restored those customers at around 9:45 Thursday evening.

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