Power was out for much of the area from about 1 p.m. to 5:45 p.m. Tuesday. The Columbus Blue Jackets game originally scheduled for 6:30 p.m. was delayed two hours.
“We understand there’s just never a good time for a power outage, whether you’re a resident, business, commercial, just never a good time for a power outage,” said Matt Bennett, operations manager for AEP Ohio. “That’s why we take them so serious, that’s why it’s an all-hands situation.”
The outage was caused by a failed piece of underground cable, according to Bennett. He said crews had to go into ten different vaults to fix the problem.
“To safely work on it and to safely energize. We had to be able to disconnect from all those other sources to even be able to energize anybody down there first,” Bennet said. “Then once we get everybody’s power back on then we’re going to go back in there and worry about fixing what failed.”
Some vaults are underground.
“If it’s overhead it’s easy to see, it’s a little bit easier to find the problem and when it’s underground that just brings in some different challenges of us locating it, us working on it,” Bennett said.
With the outage hours before a game, local businesses said it affected them in a variety of ways. Some said it created uncertainty because they weren’t sure when the power would be back. Another went cash only and kept selling drinks but lost food sales. Some said it kept the pregame crowd in longer because of the later puck drop.
Exactly what caused the underground cable to fail is still under investigation, according to Bennett.