More than 53,000 Pacific Power customers from Rogue River to Del Norte County found themselves without power for about 40 minutes Tuesday morning.

The outage appeared to have been caused by physical damage to a substation in Grants Pass, however the exact cause of the damage is still to be determined, according to Pacific Power spokesman Tom Gaunt.

The blackout started at 9:07 a.m. Tuesday and power was restored to customers at about 9:39 a.m., Gaunt said.

"They were able to reroute things and will fix damage at another time or later today," Gaunt said.

The power outage affected 53,600 customers from Rogue River and Grants Pass down the U.S. 199 corridor to Del Norte County, Gaunt said. He noted the reason the power outage was so extensive is because a transmission line was affected. This, he said, is the main transport corridor for power in the area.

"They're connected to each other," Gaunt said. "The electricity superhighway is flowing down the road, it parallels main roads. If there's blockage or an outage or some damage in one place, it can back up."

Gaunt added that the short blackout was a good reminder for people to an "outage kit."

According to Pacific Power's website, an outage kit could include a flashlight with extra batteries, a battery-operated alarm clock and radio, ready-to-eat foods and a manual can opener, bottled water, blankets and a first aid kit.

"This wasn't terribly long, but I'm sure it was inconvenient for many people," Gaunt said. "It's good to have an outage kit available for when something happens when the weather isn't so good. What would you do if this half an hour outage was longer?"

For more information about power outages, visit www.pacificpower.net/ed/po.html.

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