719 lost power this weekend in Iowa City

BY DI STAFF | JULY 09, 2012 6:30 AM

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Local businesses struggled July 7 because of an hourlong power outage, and though the power has been restored on for most customers, some local business are still dealing with problems caused by the outage.

"We're still suffering from it," said Tim Newman, an employee at the Saloon, 112 E. College St., on Sunday.

The Saloon has not yet become fully operational because most of the store's transactions run on computers, which depend on an Internet connection. Internet routers were damaged by the outage, Newman said.

Tina Potthoff, a spokeswoman for MidAmerican Energy, said the outage affected 719 Iowa City customers. The outage was not a heat-related outage but rather the result of an underground power line that was in need of repair, she said.

The power outage lasted from 1:04 p.m. until 2 p.m.

"We had an underground cable that needed to be repaired," she said, noting that the recent heat wave did not have a significant effect on the power use in the city.

The power outage also briefly knocked out traffic lights downtown, but MidAmerican was quick to get the lights working again, Iowa City police Sgt. Zach Diersen said.

The cable was not immediately repaired but downtown Iowa City's power was returned after MidAmerican switched the area to a different circuit.

— by Eric Lightner

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