Squirrel blamed for power outage

A squirrel that got into a transmission line caused a brief power outage this morning that affected 22 Georgia Power customers and knocked out several Augusta traffic lights.

The outage, which happened just after 8 a.m., lasted less than 10 minutes, said Georgia Power spokeswoman Lynn Wallace.

Traffic lights were out downtown near 13th and 15th streets down to Milledge Road, according to Richmond County dispatch.

The back-up generator at University Hospitals kicked in for about 10 minutes during the outage, said hospitals spokeswoman Rebecca Sylvester.

She added there were some issues with the phone system for between 30 and 45 minutes, with some people unable to make or receive phone calls.

Sylvester said she was unsure how widespread the problem was.

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