Posted at 10:36 AM ET, 09/09/2011

Blackout caused by one employee of Arizona Public Service Co. (video)

This time delayed-exposure shows streaks of lights from traffic on Interstate 5 with a dark San Diego skyline behind it. (Sean M. Haffey/AP)
It’s inescapable: No matter how good an employee you are, you’re going to mess up sometime. Then you suffer that stomach-dropping feeling when you know you screwed up and bad consequences will follow. For one employee of Arizona Public Services, the consequences of one mess-up on Thursday meant that millions were affected by a loss of power when huge parts of Southern California, Mexico and Arizona plunged into darkness.

APS put out a statement saying that the switch clicked off when a power line was tripped during maintenance work in North Gila, Ariz. The outage should have been contained to the surrounding area, and the power company said it would be investigating why backup protection did not work.

No injuries have been reported, though there were two sewage spills that contamenated the Los Peñasquitos Lagoon and Sweetwater River.

Here’s one San Diegan’s take on the day:

"Blackout" from Motion Art Productions on Vimeo.

By  |  10:36 AM ET, 09/09/2011

Tags:  Daily Catch

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