Thousands of area residents were left in the dark last weekend, and not just by the end of Daylight Savings Time.

Power outages affected almost 8,000 customers, both homes and businesses, and as of Monday, electric providers continued to search for a cause.

For both Umatilla Electric Cooperative and Hermiston Energy Services, a Saturday outage lasted about 2 hours and 35 minutes, from 9:17 p.m. until just before midnight.

A total of 4,139 customers were affected in and around south Hermiston from Minnehaha Road to Walls Road to Hat Rock, according to Steve Meyers, UEC members services administrator.

“We’re still reviewing the cause, but at this point, we can say that it was caused by something outside Umatilla Electric,” Meyers said.

Pacific Power was also investigating trouble with a transmission line affecting three substations in the area and a total of 3,887 customers in Stanfield, Hermiston, Echo and Umatilla. Power was interrupted for short periods of time — the longest was four minutes — on Friday, Saturday and Monday.

“They’ve all been brief, but obviously, the fact that it’s happened more than once is an issue,” said Jan Mitchell, a spokesperson for Pacific Power. “We’re working to find out what’s going on to resolve it.”

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