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December 20, 2006
Thousands Affected by Abrupt Power Outage
A half ton truck crashed into an electrical substation near Provost late Wednesday afternoon, December 13 which meant immediate disruption of power to thousands of people but that was rectified by FortisAlberta and AltaLink workers who were on the scene that night and the next day making repairs. . ©Provost News Photo.
Thousands of people were affected by a sudden disruption to electricity when a truck smashed into a power substation approximately a mile west of Provost late Wednesday afternoon, December 13.

The power went off without warning in the area at approximately 5:45 p.m.

Power was back on in town by 8:30 p.m. the same evening while in nearby rural areas many more places had power restored at 1:30 a.m. on Thursday, December 14. At 6 a.m. there were still 250 places without power.

Corporate communications manager for FortisAlberta, Jennifer MacGowan told The Provost News in a telephone interview from her Calgary office that they had 2,000 household, business, oilfield and farm installations without power. It is unknown, however how many people in total that represents since more than one person lives in many of the households.

A man who just moved to Provost was driving a half ton truck on a rural road, heading east and went off the end of a T-intersection towards the large utility installation, narrowly missing guy wires and a power pole before crashing through a chain linked fence and into a building that controls much of the power operations of the substation.
The road that he was driving on did not have a yield or stop sign posted, nor was there a checkerboard sign at the end of the road indicating the end of that road. It was dark at the time of the mishap.

Stores in downtown Provost were thrust into darkness, many with customers inside buying or shopping for goods at the time.

Cattle in the Bodo area were waiting by stock waterers but no water was flowing by mid-Thursday afternoon. Bodo was the furthest away affected from lack of power.

MacGowan said that the truck driver, who was not injured, “is a very lucky man” to avoid electrocution.

She said the entire incident caused “substantial damage” to the substation that is owned by AltaLink. But she added that although it was a “huge concern”, the “saving grace was that it was not 30 below” zero at the time.

Temperatures in the area were unusually mild at the time.
No injuries were reported.

RCMP Const. Antony Scarpelli who investigated the crash said that no charges will be laid, calling it a misadventure. He said that he “will definitely make a call” to the M.D. Provost to recommend signs be put up warning drivers of the T-intersection.

Rest of story in December 20 edition of The Provost News.
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Editor Shares His Christmas Wish List
Full story in December 20 edition of The Provost News.
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Santa Claus Makes Trip to Legion Hall
Full story in December 20 edition of The Provost News.
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Street Spokesman
This week we ask : "How Can You Keep Home Heating Costs Down?"
. . . and we heard opinions from Gertie Boser, Joe Rondeau, Carol Penman, Edwin Litzenberger, and Marlene Paulgaard.
Check out the December 20 edition of The Provost News for their answers.
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This, along with many other stories and pictures can be found in this week's edition of The Provost News.
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