A widespread Met-Ed power outage left most of Lebanon County without electricity this morning.
According to a First Energy dashboard, at the peak of the outage, 56,992 of 59,362 Lebanon County customers were affected. During the outage, most Lebanon County municipalities were showing approximately 100% of customers affected.
The exact cause of the outage is not known yet, but according to First Energy spokesperson Todd Meyers, it began around 6:37 a.m. when an issue arose with a 69,000 volt sub-transmission line that feeds into a South Lebanon Township substation in the area of Fonderwhite Road. The issue caused a breaker to open up in the substation, an occurrence that in this case triggered a cascade of issues across connected substations.
According to the Daily News, the specific issue may be a downed wire in a field near Patches Creamery.
The outage spread almost instantaneously, according to Meyers. “Everyone sort of went out at the same time.”
Substations can be monitored and reset remotely, and Meyers said that restorations began almost immediately. All Lebanon County customers were said to have power restored by 7:30 a.m.
Some customers in Middletown and other parts of Dauphin County were affected as well Meyers said the outage did not affect Berks County customers.
With restoration of service now achieved, Meyers said that Met-Ed will now turn its attention to identifying exactly what caused the chain-reaction of outages. Meyers said that the original issue with the sub-transmission line was possibly weather related.
Met-Ed has approximately 59,000 customers in Lebanon County. Met-Ed is one of several companies operated by First Energy in Pennsylvania.
This article was updated with additional information from First Energy.