Power restored for many after large outage in Valley Glen, Sherman Oaks

On a day that a heat wave pushed temperatures into the 90s in the San Fernando Valley, roughly 6,500 Los Angeles Department of Water and Power customers lost electricity Monday in the Valley Glen and Sherman Oaks areas due to multiple, near simultaneous power grid malfunctions.

About 1,184 customers remained without power as of 8 p.m., according to the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power’s website. The utility expected power to be restored to most customers by 9 p.m.

The events leading  to the outage began at about 10 a.m., when palm fronds fell and brought down power lines as tree trimmers were working on Ethel Avenue, between Oxnard Street and Victory Boulevard, Los Angeles Fire Department Battalion Chief Daniel Curry said in a video posted by the department. Separately, and at about the same time, at least one explosion was reported in nearby underground electric vaults nearby on Burbank Boulevard.

No fire was found, but some smoke was reported near the underground electric vaults, the LAFD reported. Overhead media footage from the scene showed one manhole cover had blown off.

No injuries were reported. But crews did respond to at least five calls about stuck elevators in the outage area, Curry said.

LADWP crews were sent to make repairs. The Los Angeles Department of Transportation was handling traffic control, the LAFD said.

The outage was also affecting the Los Angeles Valley College campus, which is just south of the area where the LAFD reported the possible subterranean explosions.

At 12:45 p.m., LA Valley College President Barry Gribbons said power was in the process of being restored to the campus.

“Some buildings are up and running already,” he said at that time.

Online classes were not affected by the power outage, said Gribbons.

“We did have some on-campus classes today. Some of the instructors were able to complete the classes, such as the nursing skills lab,” he said.

The outage affected Monarch Camps, the summer camp headquartered on the LAVC campus, but recreational activities were continuing, according to reports.

Power was restored to the college campus about 2:20 p.m., according to an official report.

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