By | July 20, 2022

After a Tuesday fire at Hoover Dam, near Boulder City in Nev., firefighters sprayed water. Officials claim that no one was hurt when the transformer caught on fire.

John Locher/AP

OULDER CITY (Nev.) — Tuesday’s explosion at Hoover Dam, the nation’s largest hydroelectric facility, produced a thick cloud and flames that were rapidly extinguished.

The explosion at the base of the dam caused no injuries. It is an engineering marvel that crosses the Nevada-Arizona border. According to the Western Area Power Administration, electricity from Hoover Dam was still flowing to the 8,000,000 people who depend on it in Arizona, Nevada, and Southern California.


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Officials were investigating the cause of the fire and trying to determine what had happened to the transformer. This transformer is one of 15 that controls the voltages to power customers.

Jacklynn Gould (a regional director of the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation) stated that there is no danger to the power grid.

Gould stated in a statement that the fire started at 10 a.m., and it was out in less than half an hour. Tourists were attracted to it by their description of hearing an alarm sound and feeling the ground beneath them.

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William Herro, 13, was in San Francisco when he witnessed the explosion. He then heard a “big bang” from his parents.

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“An enormous amount of black smoke just exploded into the air. Herro described it as a mushroom-like explosion that then ignited. “I was shocked and started filming.”

The explosion took place on the apron a building housing turbines, which is located about 25 miles (40 km) southeast of Las Vegas. Hoover Dam, at 726 feet (221 metres), is the highest concrete dam in the United States. Each generator can provide electricity for up to 100,000 homes.

The dam’s wide top is visited by as many as 20,000 vehicles per day. It is a National Historic Landmark. This landmark is featured in movies such TransformersFools Rush In. The bypass bridge, which was built in 2010 and used by most motorists to travel between Arizona and Nevada, is the preferred method of transportation.

The dam, powerhouses, and turbines are owned and operated by the Bureau of Reclamation. The site produces power that is then transferred to a substation, where it is marketed by the Western Area Power Administration.

Hoover Dam is a baseload power source, which means it can quickly respond to any need for additional power or dial back supply.

The alert was issued by the Western Area Power Administration control center in Phoenix after the fire. Lisa Meiman, a spokesperson for the Western Area Power Administration, stated that while the loss or damage to a transformer or other equipment at hydropower facilities can cause pressure on the grid, it is not the only source of power.

The federal hydroelectric facilities are used to supply power for the administration. Meiman stated that the Hoover Dam and Glen Canyon Dam are the two largest at the Arizona-Utah border.

Hydropower from these dams is being threatened by the falling levels of Lake Mead, and Lake Powell, which are the largest human-made reservoirs in America that receive water from the Colorado River.

In recent years, federal officials took action to support the lakes in order to maintain the dams’ power generation and water supply to Mexico and the Western States. The lakes have seen their lowest level in many decades due to drought and climate change.

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