Power restored to dorms, administrative building after fire

The Temple Administrative Services Building is about a block from the PECO substation where the fire occurred.

The residence hall Temple Towers on Tuesday. The building lost power for about an hour. JULIE CHRISTIE/THE TEMPLE NEWS

This story was last updated at 5:32 p.m. with new information. Check back later for more updates.

Power was restored to university buildings including Temple Towers and Temple University Hospital after an outage caused by a fire at a power substation. Some buildings at the Health Sciences Campus are still without power.

The fire, at PECO’s Westmoreland substation, on Westmoreland Street near Hunting Park Avenue, resulted in widespread power outages Tuesday afternoon, a PECO representative said. The fire broke out at around 1:50 p.m.

Sabrina Brooks, a PECO spokeswoman said that as of 5:25 p.m., about 26,000 customers were without power and that the company is was working to reroute the power. The number of customers without power spiked at about 36, 000, Brooks said.

Temple sent a TU Alert to students around 4:20 p.m. informing them of the outage.

Brooks added that the fire would be slow to put out because of the electrical components of the facility, which is forcing the Philadelphia Fire Department to use a powder to extinguish the fire.

The university and PECO were working to find alternatives for the approximately 600 students who live at Temple Towers while the residence hall ran on auxiliary power, said Ray Betzner, a university spokesman.

The outages also affected the Temple Administrative Services Building on Hunting Park Avenue near 24th Street, which is one block from the PECO substation. Betzner said the building had been evacuated.

Betzner added that the university will send more information to students.

Brooks said no one was injured in the fire. PECO will not know the cause of the fire until after it is extinguished, she added.

Julie Christie can be reached at julie.christie@temple.edu or on Twitter @ChristieJules.

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