FRESNO (CBS SF/AP) — More than 2,300 households in Fresno lost power Valentine’s Day evening after a metallic gift balloon drifted into a power line.
Pacific Gas & Electric spokeswoman Karly Hernandez said that the outage began about 8 p.m. in an area east of Valentine Avenue, The Fresno Bee reported Monday. Most lights were back on an hour later but some residents were without power until midnight.READ MORE: UPDATE: Victim, Suspect Identified In Fatal Oakland Park Shooting in Front of Children
Last year, metallic balloons caused about 450 outages in PG&E’s service area in Northern and central California, halting power to more than 250,000 homes and businesses, the utility reported. They said this was nearly a 30% increase in balloon-caused outages from 2019.READ MORE: COVID: Youth, Adult Multi-Team Sports Can Resume In Alameda Co., Berkeley
The utility routinely warns residents of the dangers of balloons before major holidays.
“Metallic balloons are an easy way to make at-home celebrations more festive, but nothing puts a damper on a romantic evening faster than a widespread power outage for you, your friends or your neighbors,” said Ken Wells, vice president of electronic distribution, in a news release earlier this month.MORE NEWS: UPDATE: Missing San Francisco Girl Found Safe In Pittsburg With Michigan Runaway
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