Birds blamed for power outage

Birds nesting on power lines caused the latest electrical outage in the city early Tuesday morning in a few neighbourhoods.

Birds nesting on power lines caused the latest electrical outage in the city early Tuesday morning in a few neighbourhoods.

Power to Clearview Ridge and Timberland was knocked out from about 4 to 5 a.m.

“We were able to trace it back to a nest issue on one of our power lines in the Three Mile Bend area. Down near the river, osprey is a fairly common thing,” said Jim Jorgensen, Electricity, Light and Power Department manager for the city, on Wednesday.

He said outages haven’t been out of the ordinary except for the rolling blackout ordered by Alberta Electric System Operator that impacted parts of Red Deer on July 9.

“There’s periods of time when it seems like we’re experiencing a lot of outages. If we look big picture, Red Deer maintains a very reliable system.”

He said dedication of city staff is a big reason for the dependable service.

But there can always be problems in nesting season. If birds aren’t building nests in pole crossarms, they have been known to drop nesting material across parallel wires.

“We’re always looking at some sort of effective way from deterring them from nesting on our poles. Sometimes it’s very difficult. They are very clever and ingenious.”

Early in the morning of June 28, neighbourhoods in Anders and Sunnybrook lost power when crows interfered with equipment at an electrical substation.

City staff have tried putting up obstructions between wires to try and prevent nesting, but lines cover a lot of territory, he said.

Jorgensen said residents should always be prepared for an outage as part of their emergency preparedness, for example if they require medical equipment.

“I think it’s quite important if folks have specific requirements as far as power concerns, they need to assess their own need and demand and make arrangements because an outage can happen just out of the blue. A bird. A storm. A lightning strike. A vehicle hitting a power pole.”

Just Posted

Is the fate of Red Deer’s Parsons House solely in the hands of the province?

Demolition of old police station next door to begin this fall

2019 Winter Games will transform Red Deer: Olympic organizer

Team leader behind 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympics provides inspirational pep talk

Red Deer RCMP make series of arrests as part of Project Pinpoint

Seven separate incidents lead police to repeat offenders

Red Deer city council gets the ball rolling on new fees for tax assessment summaries

Changes to provincial legislation has spurred a rise in requests

Red Deer County backs Canadian Finals Rodeo

Council approved $50,000 for the event’s inaugural event in Red Deer

WATCH: Red Deer students take part in annual run

Dawe/St. Pat’s Run reaches 40th anniversary

Smile Cookie fundraiser campaign for Reading College kicks off

Fundraising campaign runs Sept. 12-18 for program that helps children improve their reading

‘Nightmare that won’t end’: Storm evacuees can’t return yet

WILMINGTON, N.C. — Hundreds of people waited in long lines for water… Continue reading

New bridge collapses into river in rural Saskatchewan hours after opening

HYAS, Sask. — A rural politician in eastern Saskatchewan says he’s at… Continue reading

Halifax researchers tag great white shark in Atlantic Canada for first time

HALIFAX — For the first time in Atlantic Canadian waters, scientists have… Continue reading

Liberal riding association president blindsided by MP’s defection

OTTAWA — The president of an Ontario Liberal riding association says he… Continue reading

Pope gives bishops more decision-making options

VATICAN CITY — Pope Francis decreed on Tuesday that ordinary Catholics should… Continue reading

Hurricane rating system fails to account for deadly rain

TRENTON, N.C. — When meteorologists downgraded Hurricane Florence from a powerful Category… Continue reading

Glad company: Trailer for Disney’s ‘Mary Poppins Returns’

LOS ANGELES — A beloved nanny is preparing to take to the… Continue reading

Most Read