10. A real snake in the grass
May 16 – Gadsden, Ala. A 6-foot copperhead snake slithered into equipment and caused major caused transmission issues, cutting power to 6,700 people and affecting numerous substations.
9. The smoking gun
January 12 – Jackson, Mich. A gunshot damaged more than 10 insulators prompting the utility to offer a reward of up to $2,000 for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the person or persons responsible for the vandalism. Some 1,900 customers lost power in the incident.
8. What a buzz kill
September 10 – Fairfield County, Ohio. Buzzards roosting on transmission lines and transformers caused a power outage.
7. Veering off the scheduled itinerary
September 16 – Land O’ Lakes, Fla. A power outage was caused by an ultra light plane crashing into power lines near U.S. 41 and State Road 52.
6. Stealing the (spot)light
August 25 – Casper, Wyo. A fleeing felon was fingered for an outage that left 4,000 customers powerless. The suspected Colorado felon was attempting to evade authorities when his car crashed into a power pole.
5. Off the beaten track
February 21 – Bayonne, NJ. A Conrail train hooked some telephone company wires in Bayonne, bringing down three utility wires and cutting power to 800 customers.
4. Let’s talk turkey
April 8 – Sonoma County, Calif. A wild turkey flew into power lines and knocked out the high-tech, emergency 911 dispatch system. The baked bird also crippled operations at the county courthouse and jail until the following day.
3. Dad’s day disaster
June 17 – Mountain View, Calif. A bicycle chain was responsible for a 41-minute Father's Day blackout. The chain was hurled at some utility equipment, knocking out electricity to 1,516 customers.
2. Thwarting a suicide attempt
March 25 – Bakersfield, Calif. A despondent man climbed an electric tower and threatened to jump off. The utility company had to shut off the power to 25,000 people during the incident. The man was successfully talked down.
1. A well-deserved retirement for Endeavor
October 12 – Los Angeles, Calif. The planned outage was necessary so the space shuttle Endeavor could travel through the streets of Los Angeles to its new home in the California Science Center. The outage affected 400 people for four hours.
Power outages are unavoidable