Owl contacts line, disrupts service to 600

Affected Avista, ICLP customers in Cottonwood area Jan. 15

— Several hundred customers were without power service for three hours last Thursday after an owl came into contact with a three-phase line just north of Cottonwood.

The outage was reported at 5:38 p.m. on Jan. 15, according to Avista spokesperson Debbie Simock, resulting from damage to the middle line on a pole at 394 Substation Road. This affected 215 Avista customers, along with 385 Idaho County Light and Power consumers who were also serviced on this line. Crews restrung the wire, returning customer service at 8:38 p.m.

“They created more separation between the wires on this pole to help prevent a bird from getting caught in this situation again,” Simock said.

Birds and squirrels, she continued, are the leading causes for utility outages across the nation.

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