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PG&E Vault Failure Triggers San Francisco Tenderloin Blackout

SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) -- Failure of equipment on a PG&E underground vault knocked out power to more than 10,000 customers in San Francisco's Tenderloin neighborhood overnight, utility officials said.

Power was disrupted in the neighborhood and some hotels around Union Square at around 12:40 a.m. and all service was restored by 4:30 a.m.

A potent storm was pounding San Francisco at the time of the outage in the underground vault at Geary and Hyde, but utility officials did not say whether or not the failure was triggered by weather conditions.

Elsewhere, a downed tree pulled down utility lines in Walnut Creek at 1700 Tice Valley Rd. late Friday night. Access to Rossmoor was limited and some customers lost power. Crews worked overnight to remove the tree and restore power.

"If anyone encounters a downed wire, they need to assume it's live and dangerous. Don't touch it, and call 911 immediately," PG&E spokeswoman Mayra Tostado said.

PG&E spokeswoman Karly Hernandez said 335 PG&E customers lost power because of the incident, but power has been restored to at least 242. Some PG&E electric equipment was also damaged when the truck snagged the lines.

Walnut Creek police Lt. Beth Hopkins said the lines were ripped from the utility poles.

"A bit of a mess," Hopkins said. "But thankfully no one was hurt."

By 6 a.m., PG&E was reporting a little more than 1,000 outages in the Bay Area. There were 577 on the Peninsula, 239 in San Francisco, 175 in the North Bay, 70 in the East Bay and 11 in the south Bay.

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