Power fully restored after blast, fire at DWP facility cause massive outage in San Fernando Valley

NORTHRIDGE, LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- Power was fully restored in a widespread area of the San Fernando Valley on Sunday, the day after an explosion and a fire at a Los Angeles Department of Water and Power facility left at least 140,000 customers without electricity, officials said.

"Thank you for your patience as crews worked thru the night to get everyone back up," the DWP said on Twitter. "Check circuit breakers if you're still out in north SFV."

The blast was reported about 6:53 p.m. Saturday in a high-voltage area at the utility's Receiving Station J in the 18900 block of Parthenia Street, according to the Los Angeles Fire Department.

Massive flames and a thick column of black smoke rose above the facility as the fire burned in an energized storage vault containing up to 60,000 gallons of mineral oil, which is used as a cooling agent for high-voltage equipment.

Firefighters conferred with DWP officials to "electrically isolate the fire," which was extinguished with water and foam within two hours, the LAFD said in a statement. No injuries were reported.

The cause of the incident was deemed accidental, according to LAFD investigators.

By 10 p.m., power was restored to more than 50,000 customers, the DWP said. The complete restoral of electricity was announced about 8:45 a.m. Sunday.

Repairs were ongoing at the DWP station, the utility said.
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