January 10, 2018 10:48 am
Updated: January 11, 2018 1:05 pm

Woman falls down maintenance hole after electrical explosion in downtown Edmonton

WATCH ABOVE: Emergency crews rescue person who fell down maintenance hole in downtown Edmonton.

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Emergency crews were called to Edmonton’s downtown core Wednesday morning after an underground electrical vault explosion.

Edmonton fire rescue services said a woman fell down a maintenance hole after the explosion forced several covers to pop off.

“We have reports that there’s an injured civilian on scene who actually fell down into one of the manholes,” Edmonton fire rescue services spokesperson Maya Filipovic said early Wednesday morning.

A technical response team was called to the scene to assist with the rescue. The woman was pulled from the hole about 25 minutes after she fell in. She was taken away on a stretcher with what fire crews believed was a fractured ankle.

According to Alberta Health Services, one elderly woman was assessed by EMS at the scene while another elderly woman was taken to hospital in stable, non-life-threatening condition.

The explosion happened in the area of 97 Avenue and 106 Street at around 7:30 a.m.

The blast caused power outages in a large section of downtown. EPCOR’s website showed upwards of 400 customers were without power shortly after 8:30 a.m. The power outage affected several commercial, residential and high-rise buildings.

Watch below: Emergency crews were called to Edmonton’s downtown core Wednesday morning after an underground electrical vault explosion. Fire officials said a woman fell down a maintenance hole after the explosion forced several covers to pop off. Vinesh Pratap reports.

By 9:30 a.m., power was partially restored to the affected area.

Linda Dunsby was working in her office in the nearby Park Plaza building when the explosion happened.

“I was sitting in my office and I heard a bang. I thought it was a bomb and then all the power went out,” she said.

“It shook my chair pretty bad…. It’s kind of nerve wracking for sure.”

By 9:30 a.m. the scene had been handed over to EPCOR. The company said it hoped to have power restored to most customers by Wednesday evening, however one building might take a little longer, it said.

EPCOR said all power had been restored by 5 a.m. Thursday. Spokesperson Tim le Riche said restoring power to Park Plaza was a “difficult and complicated repair.” Now that power is back up and running, the company will focus on investigating the root cause of the outage.

 

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