Sitka: Eagle electrocution causes power outage

Posted: Sunday, June 30, 2002

An eagle crashed into power lines on Edgecumbe Drive late Wednesday, June 19, electrocuting itself and knocking out power to about a dozen homes, Utility Distribution Superintendent Tim Barnum said today. It appeared the eagle's extended wings touched the wires between 1104 and 1106 Edgecumbe Drive around 11:10 p.m., he said, resulting in a blown fuse on Kimsham Street.

The outage affected the residential Edgecumbe Drive neighborhood near Charteris Street toward the Gavan subdivision. Utility workers replaced the fuse and restored power just before midnight.

Barnum said that although no reports of other outages were received, it is possible that the accident caused a power "bump" in other parts of town. The Daily Sentinel's computers shut down sometime during the night, indicating a power fluctuation had occurred in the downtown area.

A representative from the Alaska Raptor Center picked up the dead eagle, Barnum said.

Power outages caused by eagles used to be concentrated near the fish plants and harbors, he said, but they now appear to be occurring throughout town.

"People are cleaning fish everywhere. When people throw the carcass out, the eagles seem to find it."

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