City outages explained

Three power outages affected Hillsboro early Thursday morning and two more happened Monday morning.

A blown circuit breaker on Westar Energy?s 115 kV transmission line south of town was blamed for the Thursday outage, said Larry Paine, city administrator.

?This was huge,? Paine said, ?because this line covers part of Hillsboro and up toward Emporia.?

The first outage happened sometime after 1 a.m. and was back on within minutes. The second power failure was about 4 a.m. and again was restored within minutes. The third outage occurred at 7 a.m. and electricity was fully restored by 8 a.m.

Nick Bundy, media spokes?man for Westar Energy in Topeka, confirmed the outage Thursday.

?It was equipment failure on the transmission line, which runs from Emporia to Hutchinson and also feeds Hillsboro,? he said.

The shorter outages were a result of the high and low voltages at the Hillsboro sub-station and power surges tripping.

Basically, Paine said, when those are out of balance, it could burn up high-powered equipment in homes.

?When a breaker trips at the sub-station, it is an inconvenience, but it means it?s doing its job protecting air-conditioning units and other appliances from literally burning up,? he said.

Two outages reported early Monday morning were due to weather, Paine said.

Lightning was responsible for one of the outages in Carriage Hills, south of town.

The second power failure was caused when a tree fell on electrical lines in the area of Cedar and Birch streets.

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