Squirrel Leaves 3,000 Customers Without Power

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KISSIMMEE, Fla., June 12, 9:45 am – The culprit of this morning’s power outage has been discovered, but the troublemaker isn’t talking.

A squirrel snuck into a Kissimmee Utility Authority (KUA) substation, causing 3,000 customers to go without power, said KUA spokesman Chris Gent.

The incident occurred at 8:38 am. KUA crews removed the animal carcass and power was promptly restored to most customers at 8:59 am. The outage affected customers along John Young Parkway, south from Carroll Street to Highway 192 and east to Rose Avenue. Because of their proximity to the substation, Bermuda Bay residents were the last to have their power restored at 9:30 am.

Squirrels are often a problem for the electric system because of the abundance of food available during the rainy season. Squirrels like to climb, but they are unable to distinguish a power pole from a tree. Because of their size and long, bushy tails, squirrels are more likely to cause problems with overhead lines than other animals. Unfortunately, it is highly likely the squirrel will die in such an accident… as was in this case. To help alleviate this problem, KUA continues to install squirrel guards in areas of high animal activity.

KUA is Florida’s 7th largest community-owned utility serving 53,000 electric, water and Internet customers in four Central Florida counties. KUA celebrates its 100th year of serving the community on June 28.

Contact: Chris Gent, Manager of Communications
(407) 933-7777 ext. 1116