High winds were the cause of a power outage that blacked out a small section of Downtown Penticton today.
Gusts of wind pushed two wires together, said Shawn Filice, electrical utility manager, causing safety systems to kick in and cut off power to a small area that included the Penticton Law Courts, Front Street and the the east side of Main Street’s 100 block.
The outage, which lasted from 11:10 to 11:56 a.m., halted proceedings in at least one courtroom. Defendants, lawyers and others were ushered out of courtroom 200, where several people were scheduled to appear before a judge for arraignment hearings, bail hearings, and various applications.
Filice said wasn’t sure why the wind was able to move the wires enough to come in contact, but suggested it might either be because the lines were temporarily relocated to accommodate the construction going where Slack’s used to be, or extra protection on the wires.
“That’s up, if someone comes in contact, to prevent an electrocution,” said Filice. “The problem is it makes the lines heavier. So when the wind blows, like it has been, they get moving more than normal.”