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Snapped Jeremy Ranch Power Pole Has Rippling Effects Throughout East Summit County

A broken power pole in the Jeremy Ranch area caused disruption throughout the western end of the county for much of Thursday.

Around 9:30 am on Thursday County officials became aware of a power pole that had snapped located in the Jeremy Ranch area.

Officials quickly got to work closing the Westbound Jeremy Ranch I-80 exit ramp in order to make sure no live wires were on the ground in the area.

The broken pole had additional traffic impacts, as the resulting power outage impacted the Kimball Junction area including traffic lights. Summit County sheriff’s office reminded drivers that when traffic lights are out travelers should treat intersections as four-way stops.

The outage also impacted Jeremey Ranch Elementary school. The district reported that during the outage a generator provided lighting, pallets of drinking water was made available, water tanks were deployed to assist in toilet flushing and a cold lunch was provided to students who proceeded through a normal school day.

The exit ramp was reopened shortly afterwork began on the incident. Power was restored to the traffic lights in Kimball Junction around 10:30 am, and to Jeremy Ranch Elementary around 11:00. Additional businesses and homes were without power for the entirety of the day.

Rocky Mountain Power worked throughout the day to restore power, an original estimated completion time of 2:30 was moved back to 6:30.

Summit County Sheriff’s Lt. Andrew Wright says they aren’t sure what caused the power pole to snap but indications are that it was unlikely it was hit by a car.

“We haven’t heard an update from Rocky Mountain Power on what caused the power pole to snap,” Lt. Wright explained. “There was a caller that described a loud explosion that prompted our deputies and (Utah) Highway Patrol to go to the Jeremy Ranch Westbound off ramp, the area where that took place. It sounds like the power pole, it actually snapped up high where someone wouldn't have necessarily been able to hit it or whatnot. So, unknown exactly right now what caused the power pole to snap and why that outage happened the way it did.”

You can find a link to Rocky Mountain Power’s Outage Map here.

KPCW reporter David Boyle covers all things in the Heber Valley as well as sports and breaking news.
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