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UPDATED: Tree falling against power pole cause of major disruption to hydro, internet

North Shore Fire Department quickly extinguished the fire, but the damage causes outage to Nelson Hydro power and Shaw internet customers for most of Tuesday. — Submitted photo

Nelson Hydro released the cause of the fire to a power pole at approximately one mile north of the Big Orange Bridge in November that knocked out the internet to parts of the West Kootenay and power to the North Shore.

A Nelson Hydro spokesperson said the fire started after a tree fell against the pole before contacting the primary phase.

Nelson Hydro said the tree then broke off the glass and landed on the cross arm.  

“Being as wet as it was this started to track down the pole and started a pole fire,” Nelson Hydro said.

The fire, extinguished by North Shore Fire Department crews, damaged Nelson Hydro and Shaw lines to the pole.

Traffic on the was halted while North Shore Fire Department dealt with the fire.

Fire to pole causes major disruption to power, internet

On Tuesday, customers, particularly in the Nelson area, realized a time before internet and smart phones after a power pole caught fire near One Mile on the North Shore causing major damage to the Shaw fibre line.

Members of the North Shore Fire Department rushed to scene to extinguish the early morning fire that caused delays to commuter traffic on Highway 3A.

The fire also caused damaged to Nelson Hydro and Shaw lines to the pole.

Nelson Hydro said customers from Johnstone Road to Sundance Road were affected due to the pole fire in the remotely accessed area while Shaw internet customers in the West Kootenay had no internet access.

“Some customers in Nelson, Castlegar, Trail and surrounding areas are experiencing an interruption to Internet, Television and Home Phone services,” the message on the Shaw website said Tuesday.

“We are working to restore service as quickly as possible and apologize for any inconvenience this may cause.”

Nelson Hydro crews worked most of the day to restore power to customers.

Meanwhile, some West Kootenay areas had internet restored during the afternoon. However, Nelson customers were without internet well into the evening hours.

The cause of the fire remains unknown.

The fire to the hydro pole caused long delays in morning commuter traffic Tuesday. — Submitted photo