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AZ: Substation Electrical Fire

Flagstaff, Arizona:  An electrical fire sent flames high into the air above McMillan Mesa on Monday night, alarming residents as far away as the Flagstaff Mall and Interstate 40.

Calls to 911 dispatchers began reporting a structure fire inside an electrical substation at about 5:30 p.m. and flames were soon shooting some 50 feet into the air.

Arizona Public Service officials say they are still uncertain what caused the fire.

“We don’t know the cause or what equipment it is, but there were no outages,” said APS spokesperson Brenda Hazlett.

Capt. Mark Johnson of the Flagstaff Fire Department said that firefighters couldn’t immediately extinguish the blaze for fear of mixing electricity and water.

Firefighters let the blaze burn while they waited for an APS crew and then helped establish a path into the yard for utility workers when they arrived to shut off power. A lack of recent rainfall in the area had firefighters concerned that the flames could spread to dry fuels on the mesa, Johnson said.

The flames were quickly extinguished once the power was cut.

APS planned to have crews on site tonight and then continue their investigation in the morning.

Story via azdailysun.com

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