Washington Power Substations ‘Vandalized’ In Attacks, Cutting Off Electricity For Thousands

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Jack McEvoy Energy & Environment Reporter
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Thousands of households in Northwest Washington were left without power on Sunday after four power stations were “vandalized” by burglars, according to local police.

Vandals broke into three power substations, run by Tacoma Public Utilities and Puget Sound Energy (PSU), and damaged the stations’ electrical equipment, causing over 14,000 Tacoma residents to lose power, according to a Pierce County Sheriff’s Department statement. More households experienced power outages after a fourth substation was attacked and a fire broke out at the scene on Sunday night, according to an update. (RELATED: Worldwide Coal Use Set To Hit An All-Time High Due To Energy Crisis)

“It is unknown if there are any motives or if this was a coordinated attack on the power systems,” the Sheriff’s department said.

The Sheriff’s department referred to the first three incidents as “burglaries” but indicated that nothing had been stolen from the electrical facilities. The department also said that they were conducting an “initial investigation” into the attacks and had not brought any suspects into custody.

“All law enforcement agencies in the county have been notified of the incidents and will be monitoring power substations in their area,” the police said.

In November, two PSU power stations in Washington state were attacked which caused the FBI to begin looking into the events, according to The Seattle Times. Similar events at electricity substations in Oregon and North Carolina have been reported to the bureau, and Washington law enforcement received an FBI memo warning of such attacks.

Tacoma Public Utilities announced Sunday evening that it had restored power to all but 900 customers.

Puget Sound Energy and Tacoma Public Utilities did not immediately respond to the Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for comment.

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