A wayward squirrel caused a power outage Sunday morning that affected 500 customers of Sturgeon Bay Public Utilities. The squirrel was killed when it caused an arc that tripped a circuit breaker at the First Avenue sub-station, shutting down electrical service to customers who receive power through the Rhode Island Street circuit. General Manager Jim Stawicki says normally only a section of the circuit is affected when animals go where they don’t belong, but this time, the entire circuit went down a little after 8am.
A crew was mobilized and the linemen worked to find the spot where a fuse was affected. Once that was fixed, the circuit breaker was flipped back on and power restored, about an hour after the lights went out. Stawicki says the utility has “animal-proofed” its lines, but squirrels seem to find a way to defeat the protective measures.