A squirrel caused a power problem Monday morning in the area of American University and Tenleytown in upper northwest Washington.

Power was out for about 20 minutes for students at Woodrow Wilson High School and about 60 customers in the area. Some students at Wilson reported hearing a boom sound at one point. Michelle Lerner, a school official with the District, said power went out at Wilson and Deal Middle School for part of the time.

Pepco said crews were sent to the area and they found the squirrel near high voltage power equipment. He did not survive the encounter and was removed from the scene.

Officials at the power company said it is not uncommon for animals — typically squirrels, but also snakes and birds — to sometimes get into the areas where equipment is located and cause outages.

It often happens in the fall when squirrels are foraging for food and preparing for winter, said Bill Yingling, a spokesman for Pepco.