Downed line erupts into curbside grass fire

By Mary Meyers
Atchison Globe – March 16, 2018

Photo by Mary Meyers

Flickering lights signaled something amiss late Thursday afternoon outside a downtown business along Third Street between Kansas Avenue and Commercial Street.

Atchison Fire Department firefighters reported they responded after 4 p.m. to the scene of an electrical power pole on fire downtown.

When AFD arrived they saw a Byrd Memorial staff member with a dry chemical extinguisher in hand, working to put out some burning grass curbside near the pole.

The fire appeared to be out by the time firefighters exited the truck.

Les Burchett, owner of the business, indicated to AFD responders that while at work inside Byrd Memorial, the lights flickered. The computers also flickered before the power went out, Burchett said.

Burchett and employees exited the building to find an attached service line had fallen from the pole to the ground, which ignited some grass.

The downed line appeared to have burnt ends. AFD radioed dispatchers to notify Westar Energy about the situation. AFD remained on the scene until Westar arrived.

Westar representatives informed firefighters that it appeared the line had arced and burned through its wires, according to the AFD report.

Westar started the repair work and AFD responders returned to the station.


Posted by Gwen Dorr Romine, KSFFA Webmaster
KSFFA’s Fire News Blog Home Page

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