A raven that got too close to a substation transformer sparked an outage Monday morning.
About 9,000 customers scattered around Whitehorse and the Southern Lakes region lost power around 9 a.m., said Jay Massie, manager of ATCO Electric Yukon.
“He got up into a bad spot. That large fault caused an overload on the hydro plant,” Massie said.
As a safety precaution, the system’s response to a surge like that is to trip a number of breakers. In this case four of the seven breakers servicing Whitehorse and the Southern Lakes area were affected.
The blackout was scattered. It included parts of Carcross, Teslin, Porter Creek, Whistle Bend, Copper Ridge, Granger and half of downtown Whitehorse.
Approximately 7,700 customers had their power back in 50 minutes. Everyone else was up and running by 11 a.m.
For obvious reasons, the raven did not survive.
This is not the only bird to cause recent problems to a northern electrical system. In June, a raven caused a power outage in Yellowknife. In that case the bird caught fire after touching the wires and started a forest fire.