A mechanical failure at one of Braintree's substations caused a widespread power outage early Wednesday on one of the coldest days of the winter.
The Braintree Electric Light Department restored power after it had been off for approximately 30 minutes throughout South Braintree and as far west and north as Braintree High School.
"Power was restored very quickly," Mayor Joseph Sullivan said. "These types of situations are going to happen, and the question becomes how quickly can you remedy a situation."
Sullivan said he and other town officials were getting ready for their day around 7 a.m. when their cell phones began ringing, alerting them to the outage. There was no discussion to send students home from school, the mayor said, but that might have come up if the outage had lingered.
A piece of equipment called a Pothead, which transitions underground cables to the above-ground system in one of BELD's substations failed, causing safety systems to shut-down the entire facility, General Manager Bill Bottiggi said in an email.
"We were able to isolate the problem and re-energize the substation after checking the condition of the other equipment," Bottiggi said. "It will take us a couple of weeks to get the new Pothead and make the repair."
The system will be run with less redundancy in the meantime, Bottiggi said, but customers should not notice anything unless BELD encounters additional problems.
BELD is not certain yet of the cause of the failure, Sullivan said.