Two lightning strikes affect thousands of power customers in N.S.
Published Sunday, August 23, 2015 6:41PM ADT
Last Updated Sunday, August 23, 2015 6:59PM ADT
Nova Scotia Power says two lightning strikes in two days led to power outages for tens of thousands of customers in the Halifax area.
Utility spokesman David Rodenhiser says crews were working to restore electricity Sunday after lightning hit the transmission line that runs along Magazine Hill to the Burnside Industrial Park.
“Those are the big wires that deliver a lot of electricity out to communities,” he said. “If you think about your circulatory system, a transmission line is like an aorta.”
The strike cut power for about 16,000 customers, although Rodenhiser says the utility had all customers affected back online by early in the afternoon.
David Paquette from Dartmouth says he was without power for several hours.
“I’m pretty well the second-closest house to the power corporation,” he said. “And I’ve had to start my generator quite a few times in the last couple of years.”
On Saturday, lightning hit a major transmission line at the Tufts Cove generating station, knocking out power to 83,000 customers for just over an hour.
He says power crews were able to restore electricity fairly quickly by rerouting power through a separate line.
For the most part, repairs were made in time for people to get on with their activities on Sunday. But some business owners like Shauna MacLean were unable to open for the day.
“We were concerned about our products, both frozen and raw meat, that would be getting warm in our fridges and freezers,” she said.
Meteorologist Cindy Day says weather systems like the one that passed through the Maritimes this weekend are becoming more common as ocean temperatures warm up.
“Last night’s thunderstorms were interesting,” she said. “They were all part of a very large low-pressure system that’s almost a subtropical system. So it came with a lot of energy, a lot of heat, and that’s what triggered the very intense thunderstorms.”
Nova Scotia Power says it’s not often lightning strikes twice.
“We don’t often have them in such proximity and so close one after the other,” says Rodenhiser.
With files from CTV Atlantic’s Sarah Ritchie and the Canadian Press.