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Raccoon Breaks Into Substation, Causes Power Outage in Most of Washington Suburbs

May 13, 2016 07:52 AM EDT
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Raccoon is a medium-sized mammal native to North America.
(Photo : Sam Greenwood/Getty Images)

Curiosity killed the raccoon.

Widespread outage occurred early Wednesday morning, in Seattle's Ballard, Fremont and Wallingford.

According to reports, a raccoon triggered the power disruption at around 3:00 a.m.

"Seattle City Light believes a raccoon wandered into the a substation at 8th Avenue NW and Leary Way and somehow de-energized the system.The incident caused a string of feeder lines to fail, causing the outage," report from King 5 said.

Jeff Pierce, who claimed he saw the raccoon, told KIRO7 that he heard an explosion and then saw the shocked animal inside the substation. "I realized there were two workers in hard hats with flashlights with a raccoon between them," said Pierce.

"They were like, 'This guy is really dazed,' and I was like, 'He is?' And they said, 'Yes, he's the one that knocked out all the power,' and I was amazed," he recalled.

However, authorities said the raccoon that Pierce saw was not the same raccoon responsible for the power disruption. Reports said the suspect raccoon did not survive as it was electrocuted by 26,000 volts when it came into contact with electrical equipment inside the substation.

Meanwhile, electricity is now back for about 38,000 customers affected by the outage.

Just last month, a little weasel shut down the Large Hardon Collider, the largest and most powerful atom smasher on the planet worth the $7 billion. According to Gizmodo, it did not get into the tunnel of the particle accelerator but managed to chew on a 66-kilovolt power cable. The scientific machine was also interrupted in 2009 after a bird dropped a baguette on it.

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