Beaufort County Blackout Update

Power lines in Beaufort County are running just fine today after an eight-hour blackout yesterday. A transformer failed at the Santee Cooper substation, and most of Bluffton and Hilton Head Island were without power from 7am until just after 3pm.

Palmetto Electric and Santee Cooper officials still don't know exactly what caused the failure, and say they may never know because of all the damage.

"There was actually an explosion and the equipment was destroyed," said Jimmy Baker with Palmetto Electric. "We will be meeting with Santee Cooper officials to try to determine what might have caused this, with the obvious idea of trying to prevent an occurrence like this in the future."

Baker says Palmetto customers took the blackout in stride, and even town officials from Bluffton and Hilton Head Island say things went much smoother than expected. A very brief outage today was unrelated; officials say it was the result of routine maintenance and did not take the system offline.

Reported by: Chris Cowperthwaite,