Osprey nest on power pole knocks out power SW of Madras

About 1,300 Pacific Power customers affected

MADRAS, Ore. - (Update: Power restored)

An osprey nest atop a power pole caused an outage that affected about 1,300 Pacific Power customers southwest of Madras late Sunday afternoon and evening, a utility official said.

The outage was reported around 3:20 p.m. in the area of state Highway 361, the Culver Highway.

Pacific Power's Oregon outage map initially said service was expected to be restored to affected customers by 5 p.m , later pushing that back to 6:30 p.m. The service apparently was restored before 6 p.m. the site indicated. 

Utility spokesman Tom Gauntt said there was no indication any birds were injured when the outage occurred. Animals, from birds to squirrels, are a fairly frequent cause of outages when they come in contact with lines or other power equipment.

"We often know there are nests somewhere, but sometimes it's news," Gauntt said. He said Sunday's rain might have made the nest not only wetter but heavier, causing an issue.

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