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When the lights went out at Reed

by: Eric Norberg,

PGE crews cut the electric power to the area around S.E. 33rd and Steele, along the north edge of the Reed College campus, in the 5 pm hour of Wednesday, July 12th--when a utility pole on Steele caught fire at the top and burned down enough to leave the electric lines it once supported hanging above what was left. Woodstock's Portland PFB Engine 25 stood by as linemen in high-lifts made repairs, and Steele was blocked between 32nd and 34th for quite a while till it was safe to restore power to the area. Not only was the cause of the fire unclear, but oddly, the pole ignited after July's only real rainfall--.10 inch recorded, in Inner Southeast.