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February 24, 2021

Underground electrical fire causes road closures, power outages in Center City

Fires Center City
Center City Fire Street View/Google Maps

The intersection of Walnut and 16th Streets, shown above in October 2019, was the location of an underground electrical fire Wednesday morning.

An underground electrical fire near 16th and Walnut streets in Philadelphia caused hundreds to lose power and forced several Center City streets to shut down Wednesday morning.

Firefighters responded at 6:30 a.m. to the intersection, where smoke could be seen coming from a manhole. PECO cited equipment malfunction as the likely cause of the fire, NBC10 reported.

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More than 200 PECO customers in Center City were without power at one point Wednesday morning. As of 1:20 p.m., only nine customers in the immediate area were still experiencing outages, according to PECO.

Walnut Street was closed between 15th and 18th Streets, while 16th Street was shut down from Walnut to Locust streets, according to CBS3Pedestrians and drivers were encouraged to avoid the area. 

SEPTA service was not disrupted and no injuries were reported.

Here are some scenes from Center City on Wednesday morning:

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