More than 1,400 Hermiston residents were without power over the weekend.

Hermiston Energy Services lost power at 2:57 a.m. Saturday and was not restored until after 9 a.m. in some areas.

“It’s still under investigation as to what the cause of it was,” said Nate Rivera, spokesman for Umatilla Electric Cooperative.

Rivera said areas affected by the outage were in central Hermiston, including North Highway 395 and Elm Avenue to the east and west. Residents north of East Main Street and south of Cedar were also affected, he said.

The power outage also extended to Good Shepherd Medical Center and Walmart.

Overall, 1,474 people were affected by the outagel. Power was restored to roughly 500 residents by 6:20 a.m. and power was restored to the remaining customers at 9:21 a.m.

Walmart spokeswoman Kayla Whaling confirmed the outage caused the store to discard an undisclosed amount of refrigerated products.

“The dairy and meat areas were impacted the most,” Whaling said.

Whaling said Walmart apologizes to customers for the inconvenience. She said store officials discarded the food items to maintain company standards.

“Those items that didn’t meet those standards were tossed,” Whaling said.

The Hermiston Police Department fielded multiple calls related to the power outage Saturday morning, many traffic-related, an HPD official said.

Callers from North First Street and Elm Avenue and West Hermiston Avenue and North First Place reported streets were without working streetlights from 7:10-9 a.m. Saturday.

One caller reported “someone almost hit my vehicle,” and another witnessed a near wreck, according to police logs.

“Any indication that there’s an issue with power in the area, people should pay extra attention,” said Tom Strandberg, spokesman for the Oregon Department of Transportation.

Strandberg said if streetlights are out, “the best course (for drivers) is to just stop at the intersection and make sure that traffic is safe to cross the street.”

In the case of lights flashing, drivers should stop.

“They should definitely slow down far ahead of the traffic signal,” Strandberg said. “Use caution — We’re heading into the winter season.”

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