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Local News in Brief : Irvine : Fires, Outages Blamed on Sudden Power Drop

A two-minute drop in electrical power short-circuited some power lines in the Skypark Circle area Thursday afternoon, forcing a temporary evacuation of four office buildings after an air conditioner and other office equipment began smoking, authorities said.

No one was reported injured and people returned to the buildings with half an hour.

An electrical substation at Main Street and Sunflower Avenue experienced a loss of some power at about 1:30 p.m., dimming lights and popping circuit breakers in the north part of Costa Mesa and portions of Irvine, Southern California Edison spokesman Gene Carter said.

Carter added that he did not know exactly how many customers were affected and that the cause of the problem remained under investigation.

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The hardest-hit area was along Sky Park Circle, according to phone calls, county Fire Department spokeswoman Kathleen Cha said.

Williams & Schmidt Engineering officials reported that an air conditioner on the roof of their building caught fire, Cha said, but the blaze quickly was extinguished.


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