Downtown in the dark

Cable failure results in 12-hour power outage downtown

A power outage in downtown Chico left more than 200 Pacific Gas and Electric customers without power for about 12 hours on Sunday, Dec. 30.

The outage, caused by a failed high-voltage cable splice in an underground vault at Fourth and Wall streets, lasted from about 5:50 a.m. on Sunday morning until 5:55 p.m. that night, leaving many commercial businesses without power, PG&E spokesman Paul Moreno said.

PG&E workers had to pump about six feet of water from the enclosure before an assessment could be made. Though the equipment in the vault is designed to work even while submerged, the water was “quite possibly a contributing factor” to the cable’s failure, Moreno said.

The downtown billiards bar DownLo reportedly experienced significant water damage due to several inches of flooding.