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Utility Pole Fire Knocks Out Power in Olyphant

OLYPHANT — A small fire on a utility pole created a big problem in the borough of Olyphant. At one point, power was out to one-third of the borough. Some ...
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OLYPHANT -- A small fire on a utility pole created a big problem in the borough of Olyphant. At one point, power was out to one-third of the borough. Some people went without power for most of the day.

The flames on the utility pole on Park Street in Olyphant were put out quickly, but the consequences continued throughout the day. The fire almost brought the pole down around 10 a.m. and borough officials started the work to replace it.

The pole, initially, had a pretty big impact, knocking out power for about 700 homes and businesses in Olyphant.

It went as far as borough hall. Olyphant Borough Manager C.J. Mustacchio and other officials worked to find a way to reroute power while they did borough business in the dark.

"We're missing our electronic media. We're missing our computers. We're missing our hardwired phones. We have our mobile phones. We have our emergency situation and center set up at the police station," Mustacchio said.

Rerouting power restored electricity to a few hundred homes and businesses served by the Olyphant power company around noon Wednesday. People closest to the broken pole were left in the dark, like Tim Skinner who lives on East Lackawanna Avenue.

"It scares me that we just went out and stocked our freezer and bought all of our groceries and everything, yesterday, so, I`m sort of scared we`re going to lose all that," Skinner said.

Replacing a utility pole is a much bigger job than it may seem. Because of that, many people along East Lackawanna Avenue in Olyphant were left without power late into the afternoon.