A power outage triggered fire alarms and knocked out traffic lights Friday afternoon in downtown Vancouver. The outage also affected the Clark County Jail and the 911 dispatch center.
The outage, reported at about 2:30 p.m., was caused when a commercial contractor dug into a buried utility line in the area, according to Clark Public Utilities spokesman Dameon Pesanti.
The utility’s outage map showed about 1,400 customers were affected. Pesanti said power was restored to all but 15 customers by 3:45 p.m.
According to emergency radio traffic monitored by The Columbian, the outage affected an approximately six block radius downtown. Dispatchers at Clark Regional Emergency Services were receiving reports of numerous fire alarms sounding and robbery alarms at area businesses. They said over the radio that the center also lost power at some point.
The outage came amid several days this week of strong easterly wind gusts that have knocked down trees and power lines across Clark County.