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Each year, power outages affect hundreds of thousands of people across the U.S. From tree damage to vehicle accidents and faulty equipment to curious squirrels, there are a variety of reasons that power outages happen. But, no matter the outage reason, it seems that there are some states that always have more power outages than others. Over the last four years, the same five states have remained in the top places for power outages.
Michigan’s most interesting fact about its power outages may be that it has the highest outages per capita than other states. Weather-related outages caused 56 of the 155 outages in 2017. Faulty equipment took second place with 36 caused outages. Average outages lasted just over an hour and affected just over 2 million people over the course of the year.
Odd Outage Fact: A dashboard video revealed the cause of an outage that affected 4,500 customers for five hours to be a goose. The camera caught the animal falling lifelessly from the sky. The bird apparently hit a 7,200-volt line, which tripped a nearby transformer.
Another Midwestern state joins Michigan in the nation’s top five. While Ohio suffered more outages than Michigan in 2017 (158) the outages affected only 663,000 customers. Similar to other states near the Great Lakes, Ohioans experience the most outages due to weather.
Odd Outage Fact: A cement mixer caused a blackout in Edgerton when the driver tried to pass a tractor but veered too far to the side. The truck was pulled into the ditch, and turned the mixer sideways, sending it into a power pole, which it severed.
Yet again, weather remains the number one factor for power outages in this east coast state. New York had 165 outages affecting almost 900,000 people in 2017. Nor’easters are to blame for the most weather-related outages and had many suburban citizens calling for tree removal to help prevent the damage. Thankfully, the average duration of an outage is only about an hour.
Odd Outage Fact: A train derailment triggered a power outage in Manhattan. Nearly three dozen people were injured when two cars of a subway flew off the rails.The accident triggerd a blackout that stopped service on four subway lines.
Everything’s bigger in Texas. Including the number of power outages. Texas takes the number two spot for power outages in 2017 with 192 outages affecting 1.1 million people. Heatwaves and flooding caused the majority of the outages in Texas in 2017.
Odd Outage Fact: A buzzard got into some equipment in a Crandall substation. It resulted in an outage to 1,527 customers.
In 2017, California ranked number one in four of the categories that Eaton Blackout Tracker monitors. These categories are vehicle accidents, animal outages, faulty equipment and weather. The state saw 438 outages over the year that affected almost 3 million people. A quarter of power losses reported had no definite reason.
Odd Outage Fact: A bobcat climbed to the top of a power pole in Cambria, shorting out the circuit at the end of his climb and cutting power to 3,530 customers. The animal did not survive.
Do you live in one of the top outage states? If so, it may be helpful to learn what to do to best prepare for out an outage in your area.