SOUTH SALT LAKE, Utah (ABC4) — An unrelated pairing of utility problems caused several disruptions to power, traffic and public transit in the area of State Street and 3300 South near I-15 early Friday morning.
South Salt Lake Police Department Executive Officer Danielle Croyle told ABC4 the power outage was caused by an excavator working in the area. The excavator pulled down an active powerline, lying down across 3300 South and a nearby fence. The powerline set the fence on fire which spread into some nearby debris.
In addition to the pulled-down powerline, a water main broke along 3300 South near 150 West, bringing traffic to a halt. Croyle said the water main break shut down traffic in both east and westbound lanes along 3300 South.
“We had a lot of things coming at the same time,” said Croyle.
Fire crews were able to quickly extinguish the fire shortly after Rocky Mountain Power shut down energy to the power line. Meanwhile, crews with Jordan Valley Water got to work repairing the water main.
All eastbound lanes have since been reopened while westbound lanes have been reduced to two lanes as Jordan Valley Water continues their repairs. Croyle said around 3 p.m. on Friday afternoon, the westbound lanes on 3300 South will be reduced further to one lane so crews can finish repairs.
“We just remind everybody that it is congested,” said Croyle. Please be a courteous driver and if you can, avoid the area because they are going to be working on it today to try and get everything fixed.”
There have been no injuries reported from the two utility problems and crews say there has been no significant damage.
At the height of the incidents, traffic on the road was bumper-to-bumper and police were actively diverting traffic from the area. Both the Red and Blue TRAX lines were also briefly disrupted, causing “major delays,” according to the Utah Transit Authority. A temporary bus bridge was put into effect between Central Pointe and Meadowbrook Stations. Just before 8 a.m., TRAX trains were given the go-ahead to travel through the area but UTA said commuters should still expect major delays while trains try to resume their schedules.
Meanwhile, Rocky Mountain Power is reporting nearly 1,400 customers have been impacted by the resulting power outage. Crews were notified and are working to restore power as soon as possible to every customer.
Rocky Mountain Power’s outage map reports power is expected to be restored by 12 p.m. this afternoon. As of 10:30 a.m., only 375 customers were still affected by the outage.