Explosion inside electrical vault causes power outage on Fourth Street, fire officials say

An underground explosion inside an electrical vault on Fourth Street left several businesses and homes near Retro Row without power for over an hour Wednesday evening, according to the Long Beach Fire Department.

Fire officials said the power outage was reported at around 5:30 p.m. in the 1700 block of Fourth Street.

It’s not clear how far the outage stretched, although Long Beach residents on the social media app Nextdoor reported experiencing electrical issues all the way to Seventh Street.

Witnesses reported hearing an explosion that lifted up a manhole cover, LBFD spokesperson Capt. Jack Crabtree said.

When fire crews arrived at the scene, they witnessed smoke coming from the manhole and learned that something inside the vault exploded, Crabtree said.

Police closed off a portion of Fourth Street as workers from Southern California Edison worked on restoring power.

Power was restored by 6:59 p.m., according to an Edison spokesperson, who said 1,270 people were affected by the outage.

Editor’s note: This story was updated with more information from Southern California Edison. 

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