Black Press Media files

Itchy bears, rogue balloons and a nosy neighbour: B.C’s most memorable power outages of 2019

BC Hydro releases its weirdest and wackiest power outages of the year

From busy beavers harvesting timber for a dam to a nosy neighbour who tried to install a security camera to a power pole, BC Hydro has released its most memorable power outages of 2019.

The utility aims to finish the year on a much quieter note than 2018, when one of the most damaging winter storms in recent memory set up the province, knocking out power to more than 75,000 customers for days.

ALSO READ: Most B.C. residents, including those hit by 2018 storms, not prepared for outages

Here’s a look at BC Hydro’s most memorable outages:

Williams Lake: Ten customers were left without power after a bear used a pole as a scratching post. A similar incident occurred near Hope when an itchy bear rubbed against the side of a house and knocked the meter off the socket.

Vernon: A hot air balloon was attempting to land when it hit a power line. Luckily, the balloon’s fabric tore free and passengers reached the ground safely.

Surrey: A customer found out the hard way that flying a drone around power lines in a residential area was a bad idea after the drone hit a power line and knocked out power in the customer’s own home.

Dawson Creek: Beavers harvesting timber were the cause of an outage after the trees they were chewing on collapsed onto power lines. BC Hydro crews prevented a similar incident from happening in Hixon.

Vancouver Island: A resident climbed a power pole and installed a security camera on top in an attempt to secretly record the neighbours. Crews were alerted and the camera was removed.

Clinton: A bald eagle caused chaos when it dropped its lunch – a Canada goose – onto a power line.

Vancouver’s north shore: More than 20,000 customers in North Vancouver and West Vancouver were left in the dark after powerful winds converged with a low pressure system to form a type of storm known as a “bomb cyclone.”

Richmond: A bundle of rogue balloons on New Year’s Eve hit power lines, resulting in 20 customers starting 2019 in the dark.

Stewart: Hunters used transmission towers for target practice, causing an outage that affected 170 customers and more than $60,000 in damage. Two similar incidents happened on Vancouver Island, near Coombs and Qualicum Beach.

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

’Herbert’ Shane Hartman with his daughter Isla. (Shane Hartman Facebook photo)
Love for daughter and drumming leads to author’s first book

Shane Hartman spent very spare moment writing and illustrating Isla’s New Drum

“We have to make a call out to address this now so our people don’t have to feel fearful,” said Tribal Chief Mina Holmes. (Carrier Sekani Tribal Council Facebook photo)
Carrier Sekani Tribal Council seeks Indigenous-led task force in northern B.C. hospitals

Request made in an open letter to federal minister Carolyn Bennett

NDP headquarters on election night, Oct. 24, 2020. (Katya Slepian/Black Press Media)
ELECTION 2020: Live blog from B.C. party headquarters

BC NDP projected to win majority government – but celebrations will look different this election

B.C. Green Party leader Sonia Furstenau outlines her party's climate action platform at Nanaimo's Vancouver Island Conference Centre earlier this month. (News Bulletin file photo)
Green leader Furstenau declared victor in her home riding on Vancouver Island

Cowichan Valley voters elect freshly minted party leader for her second term

Submitted
BC VOTES 2020: John Rustad re-elected in Nechako Lakes riding

The result is based on preliminary vote count and the final results will be available after Nov.6

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry updates the COVID-19 situation, B.C. legislature, Oct. 26, 2020. (B.C. government)
B.C.’s COVID-19 case count jumps by 287, another senior home outbreak

Two more deaths recorded, community outbreak in Okanagan

An untitled Emily Carr painting of Finlayson Point was donated to the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria by brothers Ian and Andrew Burchett. The painting had been in their family for several decades. (Courtesy of the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria)
Never before seen painting by famed B.C. artist Emily Carr gifted to Victoria gallery

Painting among several donated to Art Gallery of Greater Victoria

The B.C. Centre for Disease control is telling people to keep an eye out for the poisonous death cap mushroom, which thrives in fall weather conditions. (Paul Kroeger/BCCDC)
Highly poisonous death cap mushroom discovered in Comox

This marks first discovery on Vancouver Island outside Greater Victoria area

100 Mile Conservation officer Joel Kline gingerly holds an injured but very much alive bald eagle after extracting him from a motorist’s minivan. (Photo submitted)
Rescued bald eagle that came to life in B.C. man’s car had lead poisoning

Bird is on medication and recovering in rehab centre

Janet Austin, lieutenant governor of B.C., was presented with the first poppy of the Royal Canadian Legion’s 2020 Poppy Campaign on Wednesday. (Kendra Crighton/News Staff)
PHOTOS: B.C. Lieutenant Governor receives first poppy to kick off 2020 campaign

Janet Austin ‘honour and a privileged’ to receive the poppy

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Premier-elect John Horgan and cabinet ministers are sworn in for the first time at Government House in Victoria, July 18, 2017. (Arnold Lim/Black Press)
Pandemic payments have to wait for B.C. vote count, swearing-in

Small businesses advised to apply even if they don’t qualify

A raccoon paid a visit to a Toronto Tim Hortons on Oct. 22, 2020. (shecallsmedrew/Twitter)
Who are you calling a trash panda? Raccoon takes a shift at Toronto Tim Hortons

Tim Hortons said animal control was called as soon they saw the surprise visitor

The duffel bags were found to contain 84 pounds of cocaine, valued at approximately $1.2 million and 198 pounds of methamphetamine, valued at approximately $960,000. Photo courtesy U.S. Customs and Border Protection.
2 men accused of fleeing border agents near U.S.-B.C. border with $2M in drugs

Cocaine and methamphetamine seized by U.S. law enforcement in remote Idaho area near Canadian border

Most Read