KETTERING — A squirrel that caused damage to equipment was blamed for a fire at a DP&L substation in Kettering that initially knocked out power to nearly 23,000 people, according to a DP&L spokesperson.
The fire was first reported at the substation on East Dorothy Lane west of Wilmington Pike in Kettering around 7:40 a.m. Monday.
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As of 11:15 a.m. power was restored to customers.
An estimated time for restoration for all DP&L customers was not provided.
Firefighters reported the fire was under control around 8:30 a.m. and said they allowed the fire to burn itself out, according to fire officials.
Over a dozen DP&L trucks were on scene to investigate and make repairs shortly after the fire was brought under control.
Oakwood and Kettering schools decided to keep classes as scheduled for the day, despite the outages in parts of both cities.
As of 10:35 a.m., the only school without power was Orchard Park Elementary, which is located just a few hundred yards down the street from the substation where the fire broke out, according to Kettering schools spokeswoman Kari Basson.
Power had returned to Van Buren Middle School, Fairmont High School, and Oakview Elementary by 10:30 a.m. Previously, power was restored to Beavertown Elementary and the district’s central offices and bus garage before 9 a.m.
Basson said the district’s food and nutrition department is planning cold lunches at Fairmont and Van Buren because of how late the power came back on. Orchard Park Elementary is ordering pizza for the students.
We’ll continue to update this story as we learn more.